“Let us…remember Peter: three times he denied Jesus, precisely when he should have been closest to him; and when he hits bottom he meets the gaze of Jesus who patiently, wordlessly, says to him: “Peter, don’t be afraid of your weakness, trust in Me.” Peter understands, he feels the loving gaze of Jesus and he weeps. How beautiful is this gaze of Jesus – how much tenderness is there! Brothers and Sisters, let us never lose trust in the patience and mercy of God!” – Pope Francis
Don’t be afraid of your weakness. This simple sentence goes against most logical trains of thought, especially when it comes to careers in our modern world. As a leader, I have been through many training programs where we identify strengths and weaknesses, and a majority of them always focus on making the strengths shine, and keeping the weaknesses in the background while you are “working on them”.
Jesus wants us to not be afraid of our weakness, to understand it, and learn from it. Peter was given the task of continuing Jesus’ mission here on Earth, to be the rock that would endure long after the death and resurrection of Jesus. In this moment, he wanted Peter to know that he understands it is not an easy task, to not shy away from God, even when we know we shouldn’t. He wanted to make sure that Peter knew, no matter what, He will always be there, and will always treat him with mercy. As long as we can realize the flaw in our way, and turn back to Jesus, we will be saved. I know I shouldn’t, but I envy Peter, for being able to look into the eyes of Jesus and see love like that.
We all have weaknesses. We are all not perfect. Jesus wants us to acknowledge those weaknesses, turn towards him, and ask for the Grace to help correct our ways. He wants us to ask for help. He wants us to not be afraid, and trust in Him. He doesn’t want us to push the weaknesses into the background, and pretend they do no exist. No, He wants us to work on them head on, and know that He will be there to help make those weaknesses strengths.