“Yuck, it’s awkward!”
“I was awkwardly looking at all of them.”
“They were so awkward!”
And so it went as I transported my daughter and her girlfriends to a school event. For about half an hour, I listened to their conversations. It seemed like every other sentence used the word “awkward”. After a while, I felt awkward because I wasn’t quite sure what they meant! So I visited the online dictionary which defines awkward with the following meanings:
1. lacking skill or dexterity.
2. lacking grace or ease in movement
3. lacking social graces or manners
4. not well planned or designed for easy or effective use
5. requiring caution; somewhat hazardous
Thus, depending upon the setting, any of these definitions may be applicable.
The Apostle Peter was impetuous, always putting his foot in his mouth, and acting and speaking before thinking. He was awkward! It is easy for me to be critical of Peter’s awkwardness. However, before I am too quick to judge, I need to look in the mirror. My life is filled with awkward circumstances, relationships, events...all of these can result in humiliation and anguish. Sometimes, the only one I hurt is myself, taking the form of a bruised ego or deflated pride. But sometimes, others are drawn into the situation. And an already awkward situation becomes far worse.
Peter denied his Lord three times on night of Jesus’ arrest. Now, after His resurrection, Jesus appeared before Peter and restored him to the relationship they shared for 3 years. He offered Peter a chance to understand and demonstrate the kind of love it takes to truly follow and commit his heart to Jesus. And for the three times Peter denied knowing Jesus, Jesus asked Peter three times, “Do you love me?”
He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?” Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, “Do you love Me?” And he said to Him, “Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You.” Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep.”
An awkward situation. Perhaps the most awkward situation anyone has ever faced. But Jesus understands awkward situations. He was beaten, tortured, and died a humiliating death on the Cross. His enemies mocked Him and His disciples and followers fled.
He endured this for us. He died on the Cross to pay the penalty that God demands of sin and rebellion. He endured this supreme moment of awkwardness so that God could raise Him from the dead. What a glorious Savior we serve!
Love and respect the Lord; seek His will in your life.