How would Jesus Unearth People's Potential?

When I first asked myself how does Jesus unearth people's potential, the first person I thought of was Peter. If you read about Peter in the Bible, you quickly see that Peter wants to live a life devoted to Christ and Christ clearly sees great potential in Peter. But Peter is the apostle that doesn't quite get right the first time. One key example of this is when Christ told Peter he would deny Him.

Why would Jesus do that?  I don't think He told Peter to try to stop Him from doing it. I believe it was Christ helping Peter to realize his potential in ways Peter could truly understand: by experiencing it for himself.

There were two main elements that Peter needed to experience to understand:

1. Failure

2. Forgiveness

When do we learn the most? After we fail.

By calling to Peter's attention his denial, Christ is telling Peter this is one of the biggest things you can't do if you want to live a life devoted to me. But Peter, like most of us, needs to test it, experience why its wrong to learn the right way to do it. Without having heard Christ tell him it was going to happen, experiencing the shame and guilt for having done it, the experience may not have been a big enough deal for Peter. So Christ ensures it is a big deal and tells him in advance.

What experiences in your life do you know are wrong? How do you know they are wrong?

Have you done them anyway? How does it make you feel?

Have you done it again? If so, why? or why not?

In order for Peter to move forward in the life Christ sees him as the head of the church, Peter must first understand He is forgiven for messing up. (John 21:15-19). Christ confirms this by asking Peter "Do you love me?" three times. Once Peter gets it, he understands that he no longer has to emotionally beat himself up for what he's done or sacrifice to atone because Jesus has forgiven his sin. He understands what forgiveness means because he knows and loves Jesus.

By greater understanding, of failure and forgiveness Peter is now fulfill Christ request to "Feed my sheep" and lead the church and live out his potential.

In what areas of your life do you need to understand that you are forgiven so you can move on to live out your potential?