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Nov 28, 2019 59 0 Connie Beckman
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God Doesn’t Make Junk

Just a Piece of Junk?

“Before the rooster crows today, you will deny Me three times. And Peter went outside and wept bitterly.” —Luke 22:61

Peter was heartbroken. He was filled with grief because his beloved friend Jesus had been arrested and condemned to death on the cross. There was nothing Peter could do to stop it and, on top of that, he had denied he even knew Jesus—not once, not twice, but three times. He felt tormented by shame and guilt.

You can almost hear Peter lament: “Lord, I failed You. I was sure that I would stand by You through thick and thin but instead I denied that I ever knew You. Now it’s too late. Oh Jesus, there was never anyone like You and now You’re gone forever. I’m rotten through and through. I’m just a piece of junk that you should have left by the lakeside.”

Peter wept bitterly. In his sorrow, Peter must have begged the Lord’s forgiveness over and over again. I can relate to Peter because I have denied knowing Jesus because I feared what people would think. I remained silent when I knew in my heart that I needed to speak the truth to someone about the faith. I wimp out at times, just like Peter. I, also, have been filled with sorrow, shame and guilt because of my sinful actions or inactions.

Take Heart!

However, that is not the end of Peter’s story and it need not end there for us either. Jesus continues to beckon us to come to Him so we can be cleansed by His divine mercy. He restores our soul and heals our broken hearts. Little by little, Jesus infuses us with the graces to live in His love and share our love for Him with others. “Let the house of Israel say, ‘His mercy endures forever.’ Let the house of Aaron say, ‘His mercy endures forever.’ Let those who fear the Lord say, ‘His mercy endures forever’” (Psalm 118:1-4).

God does not make junk. I may fall from grace and fill my heart with all kinds of junk but the good news is that Jesus is the junk collector. Each time I go to the sacrament of reconciliation Jesus cleans out the clutter in my heart. When I sin and acknowledge my wrongdoing I go to Jesus and say “Guilty as charged.” Yet, instead of punishment Jesus tenderly showers me with His endless mercy. “The Lord remembered us in our low estate, for His mercy endures forever” (Psalm 136:23).

After the Resurrection Peter and his disciples went fishing. Peter’s heart was filled with sorrow and remorse. That all changed when Peter saw Jesus on the shore. Peter got so excited that he jumped into the water and swam ashore to greet Jesus, his beloved friend. Imagine how Peter felt. He had thought his friend was gone forever and that he had forfeited all rights to His friendship. Suddenly, there was his Lord and God beckoning him to come. What joy Peter felt at being back in the presence of the Lord, receiving His forgiveness.. It just does not get any better than that!

Reflection

God is love and mercy itself. Jesus does not care how far you have moved away from Him. He continues to call you back to His most sacred heart, to receive His mercy and love. He is waiting for you with open arms, ready to shower you with His loving mercy. Will you not turn to Him now? Run to Jesus, just as Saint Peter did, to be restored, refreshed and healed. Allow Jesus to transform your heart. “Thus, says the Lord, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:26).

Connie Beckman

© resides in Helena Montana with her husband and their four cats and dog. She is an active member of the Cathedral of Saint Helena. She is a member of the Catholic Writer's Guild and a small Catholic Writer's Group in Helena that meets monthly. She is a former editor and feature story writer for a small bi-weekly newspaper. Beckman has been published in a number of Catholic magazines. Her desire as a writer is to encourage Catholic spiritual growth by sharing the truths of the Catholic faith. She shares her joy and love of God at her website www.conniescatholiccorner.com. Originally published in “The Family Digest Magazine.” Reprinted with permission.

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