“I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.” – NIV
As Christians, we know that the prayers of the Son of God never went unanswered. There was never a hint of conflict between the persons of the Trinity and, definitely, no separation. When the incarnate God requested, the enthroned God heard. When Jesus Christ prayed this prayer for Simon, Simon was secure.
What do we make, then, of Simon Peter’s famous denial? 3 times he swore that he did not know the man of Jesus, 3 times he lied about the One to whom he swore his allegiance. Doesn’t this action alone prove that he was not protected from evil, that his faith did – in fact – fail?
The answer to this question is no. When Jesus Christ looks at our faith, He sees a lifelong process. He sees whether our faith will be proven false by our testing or refined by it. When we fall, and we all do as Peter did, He knows whether we will get back up. No matter what we may think, a momentary falter does not determine the final outcome.
The way I see it, there is a distinct difference between taking our faltering efforts seriously and using them as conditions that define us. Let us trust the Son of God, the same Lord who has personally prayed for us.