There was this awful kind of hurt that happened one day right before Jesus’s death, when Peter heard a rooster crow, knowing he’d whole-heartedly denied his best friend’s presence in his life.
The tension between them when they saw each other again after that must have been deep and thick, nearly tangible.
When shame overcomes us, we tell ourselves that we don’t deserve anything.
We don’t deserve eye contact, because we’ve pierced the heart.
We don’t deserve good, because we have created such evil in ourselves.
We don’t deserve love, because we are only capable of hate.
We don’t deserve to sit in the light, because darkness covers us.
We don’t deserve salvation, because we are human and lost.
Shame is born in brokenness and re-created over and over again,
lie after lie after lie, until we’ve lost ourselves and lost the truth of an empty tomb and
a risen King.
I wonder what must have broken free in Peter’s spirit when he saw Jesus risen and alive.
What a juxtaposition to his deep and constant shame.
I wonder what was said between them, what looks in their eyes, what body language, what kind of embrace.
If I let my shame creep over me long enough, I forget that Jesus’s life was marked for death.
If I let my shame cloud the truth, I forget that Jesus’s death was nothing compared to His life,
the kind of life that keeps going and keeps giving and keeps covering
an abundant multitude of sins and shames.
So this second day of Lent, we choose to forget about our shame for once,
and focus on the Light that was born of a virgin and carried the weight of human years.
We focus on that Light that jarred Peter’s spirit and kept steady steps to the cross,
that Light that fully enveloped darkness in its wake,
and envelops our darkness all the same,
until there is no more room for our shamefulness.