“Simon, Simon, look out! Satan has asked to sift you like wheat. But I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And you, when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:31-32)
During the night before His crucifixion, Jesus shared the Passover meal with the disciples and gave what would be His final words of instruction before He would be arrested and killed. In the middle of sharing with His disciples. Jesus looks at Peter and tells him what will happen to him. Later Jesus tells Peter that before the rooster crows three times, Peter will deny Jesus. Here Jesus is telling Peter (and the disciples as a whole) that Satan wants them. Satan wants to sift them like wheat. He wants to cause trouble in their lives.
But Jesus tells them that He has prayed for them and He tells Peter that when he repents (from denying) to “strengthen your brothers.” Even in these short verses, there is truth. We will have to deal with tough times. We will mess up and fail. But the great news is that Jesus is praying for us. He is interceding for us with the Father. He is able to do that because of His death paying the cost for our sins and His resurrection being at the right hand of God. And when we fail, we can repent and turn back to Him and He accepts us. As well, we have the opportunity to strengthen and encourage one another as we all go through various trials and tribulations.
This week, let us give thanks that Jesus has prayed for us. Let us be grateful that when we mess up, we can repent and turn back to God. And let us encourage one another and strengthen our brothers and sisters in Christ.