There are many things to love about St. Peter: leader of the Twelve, first Pope, Jesus’ Right Hand Man. But most of all, at least for me, is his humanness. He makes mistakes, like in today’s Gospel reading:
From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples
that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer greatly
from the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes,
and be killed and on the third day be raised.
Then Peter took Jesus aside and began to rebuke him,
“God forbid, Lord! No such thing shall ever happen to you.”
He turned and said to Peter,
“Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle to me.
You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”
This, of course, follows right after Peter’s great confession of faith: “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God!” Yet, he still struggles with how that will play out, that because JEsus is True God and True Man, and the anointed Messiah, he must suffer. It is just a little too much for Peter at this point, and he lets it go to his head.
Yet, the important lesson is that Jesus truly learns from his mistakes and repents. There’s the lesson for us today: are we able to admit we made a mistake and own up to it before Our Lord and ask for His forgiveness and strength to overcome?