“Then Peter remembered the word of the Lord….went out and wept bitterly” (Luke 22:61, 62).
When you humble yourself and shed tears in the presence of God, all the burdens of your heart get cleared. Here, think a little about the tears of Peter.
Firstly, it is a tear of a guilty conscience. It is rare for men to cry. That too, a strong man like Peter shedding tears is something surprising. Is it not? Yes. When the guilty conscience pricked his heart, Peter was unable to bear it. He cried shedding tears. Apart from denying Jesus, Peter was also cursing and swearing, and the eyes of Jesus looked at him sharply. That one look broke the heart of Peter. The guilty conscience began pricking him.
Conscience is nothing but a divine voice which God has placed in the heart of man. When one commits sin presumptuously, the guilty conscience pricks the heart, injures and begins to squeeze it. Many people continue to sin without minding the repercussions, and the conscience becomes blunt for them. In the end, they take part in the eternal suffering.
Peter had a tender conscience. That is why, when it pricked his heart, he immediately cried bitterly and turned back to Christ. The Scripture says, “It was symbolic for the present time in which both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make him who performed the service perfect in regard to the conscience. …how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God” (Hebrews 9:9, 14).
When David sinned, God sent Nathan the prophet and made him realise his sin. At once, David pleaded in the presence of God and received mercy and power from God.
Secondly, it is a tear of a life of backsliding. The defeat which Peter attained due to his life of backsliding, was the cause of his cry. Peter must have been sleepy when Jesus asked him to pray in Gethsemane. Since he fell short in prayer, he was unable to withstand the tests which he faced. The Scripture says that Peter followed Jesus at a distance, and he sat with the servants of Pilate and warmed himself at the fire. Dear children of God, plead to God with a broken and a contrite heart, as Peter did. He will surely turn all your defeats into victories. To meditate: “For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death” (II Corinthians 7:10).