Lenten Monologue-Peter

On Wednesday March 12th, I performed a reading from the perspective of the Apostle Peter. This reading was based on John 21:15-19 and was based on the question “Do you love me?” asked by Jesus.

This is the first in Underwood Lutheran’s series of Lenten worship services held on Wednesday evenings through the season. The overarching theme for Lent is the questions of Jesus. Each week we will hear a reading by a different Biblical character who was questioned by Jesus in their encounter.

While the monologue/reading was not recorded, I will plan on posting the readings themselves on a weekly basis, so you can keep looking for them.

Note that about half way through the monologue, there was a video shown that features the Skit Guys in a humorous but meaningful look at the scene featured in the scripture lesson. There is a link to the video at the correct time.

My name is Simon…at least that’s what my parents called me when I was born…and I guess everyone still called me that as I was growing up…all the people that would come to the seashore in the morning to buy the fish that I would catch with my brother Andrew called me Simon…you know what, as I think about it…everyone called me Simon…at least for a while.
But that all changed one day…it changed the day that I met Jesus…let me tell you…that was some day. I was just sitting there along the shore that day…a day like any other…and there he came. I’d heard about him already…some holy man that was doing some pretty amazing things…but I never expected to meet him…and I certainly didn’t expect him to change my life like he did.
Jesus just came walking up to me…and he said “follow me” And I had to…I couldn’t resist…there was just something about him…but what was really amazing about that day was the change that came over me…Jesus looked at me and said “You are called Simon…but I will call you Peter.” Now, you should know that the name Simon means shifting sand…and I suppose that’s fitting. I’ve been known to be a little impulsive…and not just that…I guess I’ve been pretty shaky at times…and just like the sand swirling around when a wave comes rolling in, my life was pretty swirly too…but Jesus said he would call me Peter…and Peter mean the Rock…solid, unmoving…and he said that he was going to build his church on that rock.
How could he do that? How could he even think that I’d be worthy of anything like that? I couldn’t believe it…but then Jesus was always doing things, or saying things that just didn’t make much sense…there were a lot of us that followed him…Me and Andrew…our friends James and John…we were just 4…there were 12 of us…not to mention all the other people that followed him around those three years.
Now let me tell you something…Jesus…he knew his stuff…and he should…I mean, come on…he’s the son of God…but the great thing about it was that he always wanted us to understand…we asked him questions all the time…constantly trying to wrap our simple minds around the amazing truths about God and Heaven and sin and forgiveness…all that stuff…but its tough you know…it wasn’t easy…and I think out of all us…I asked the most…I had to…I mean…he was gonna build his church on me…I guess I felt like I was responsible to know all the answers…so I ask him…and asked him…and asked…over and over again. I thought if I covered all the basis, then I’d be capable of being in charge…and all I’d have to do is put on a brave face and just keep following him.
But what Jesus had in mind went way beyond my abilities…beyond my ability to understand…and beyond my capability to handle.  You see…I always thought that Jesus was going to stick around…and I would be in charge of the followers…but really…we’d all still be following him…Jesus talked about being sacrificed…about being killed…but I didn’t believe him…I thought maybe he was just talking about it as a possibility…but I never thought it would actually happen…but then it did…Judas…he was supposed our friend…he betrayed Jesus…had him arrested…and we knew what that was going to lead to.
We’ve all seen the crucifixions…the dead bodies…we know what the Romans do…but I had said that I would follow him…even to death…but when it got right down to it…I failed…and not only did I fail to help him…I denied him…that was the worst mistake I ever made.
But you know what…after he died…after a couple more days…something amazing happened…and he came back to life…we saw him many times after his resurrection…and just the fact that he was alive again made us so happy…it was so amazing…
But then…one early morning…we encountered him again…and he asked me a question…a very simple question…at least I thought it was simple…until he asked me again…and then a third time…it went like this.

(skit guys video Note..there’s likely a short ad that will play at the beginning of the video…you can skip it after a few seconds)

It hurt so bad that Jesus had to keep asking me over and over again if I loved him. Of course I loved him…but I messed up…I denied it…but you know what…Jesus gave me a second change. He asked me…three times Do you love me…just like I had denied it 3 times.
Because Jesus came to forgive our mistakes…I know that now, even if I didn’t know then…that’s the grace of God…the gift of God. We don’t earn it…we don’t deserve it…and even though my mistake was unforgivable…Jesus forgave me…just like he forgives us all…and then, one more time…Jesus repeated the same thing he’d said to me on the seashore that first day I met him…Follow me.
God’s gift to us is forgiveness, each and every day…and each and every time, he’ll extend the invitation to follow…just as if those past mistakes had never happened. So if he ever calls you by name and asks “Do you love me.” He’s not condemning you for your sins…because he’s already forgiven you…He’s just asking you to follow him.

All rights to the video belong to the Skit Guys.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Teri on March 13, 2014 at 10:09 am

    Wow. So powerful

    Reply

  2. Posted by Ecclesia Vox on February 1, 2017 at 4:02 pm

    Thanks for posting your monologue. Where you got the idea that Simon means ‘shifting sand,’ since the name is generally understood to be derived from the Hebrew ‘to hear’? Also, how do you reconcile your description of Jesus walking up to Simon and renaming him by the seashore when John 2:42 makes clear that Andrew, a disciple of John the Baptist, brought his brother Simon to Jesus, who renamed him, presumably near where John was baptizing, at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan (John 1:28)?

    Reply

    • My understanding has been that Simon means “shifting sand” while Peter (or Cephas) means “rock.” If I’m off I’m off.

      On the question of Jesus approaching Simon on the seashore…this is how the encounter is depicted in the synoptic gospels. Yes John’s gospel gives us a different take involving Andrew. I don’t discount that. But the different gospels give us different stories. (Matthew 4:18-20, Mark 1:16-18, Luke 5:1-11…and Luke’s account is a little different than the others as well).

      Reply

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