When I first started my mission one of my teachers in the CCM asked my name, and of course I said "Hermana Peters" and she looked at me and smiled and said "Peter in Spanish is Pedro, like the great apostle, you have quite the name"
Those words ring back to me now as I study a bit more of the New Testament, Peter not only was an apostle of Jesus Christ, but after the Christ returned to dwell in the presence of his father, Peter was left in charge of the church, as a Prophet of the Lord.
In Dieter F. Uchtdorf's talk to New Mission Presidents in June of 2014, He shines a little more light on this prophet and the change that Peter had in his lifetime when he said "The great senior Apostle Peter is of particular interest to me. Here was a man who was no stranger to adversity- he was a man's man. How often had he steadied the rudder of his small fishing vessel during a threatening storm? How often had he bartered with shrewd merchants for the price of his fish? And yet, what do we see in this ‘rock’ of a man prior to the Resurrection? Among other things, we see fear! When he stepped out of his boat on the Sea of Galilee and walked on the water toward the Savior we see the beginnings of great courage and faith. "but when he say the wind boisterous, he was afraid and beginning to sink he cried saying Lord Save me" (Matthew 14:30)"
And not to mention that hour’s before the death of Jesus Christ he denied his relation to "Jesus of Nazareth". "Mark writes of Peter's denials and even says that Peter "began to curse and to swear, saying, I know not this man of whom ye speak"(Mark 14:71) Peter later wept and agonized over that betrayal. With a Broken Heart he pleaded with God for forgiveness. How could he have been so weak? How could he have allowed fear to make him deny the man whom he knew was "the Christ the living son of God?"(Matthew 16:16)"
I think we all start out like this Peter, with fear of rejection, with fear of man. I have seen countless numbers of people who have had the fear of rejection sufficient to hide the gospel of Jesus Christ with their own families. But there is something bigger and greater than that, something that made Peter stronger, something that made him a leader. He was changed from the moment that he saw his Lord resurrected.
After the resurrection of Jesus Christ "From that Easter Sunday morning on, Peter was a new man. He had been born again. For the rest of his life, Peter faced threats, ridicule, hatred, and humiliation. But he did not back down. He feared no man. Nothing kept him from fulfilling his mission to raise his voice as a witness of his Savior, Jesus Christ.”
Maybe I still have fear. Maybe I’m still not as strong or fearless as the renewed Peter. But we can all make that change, and I know that through the Atonement and Resurrection of Jesus Christ that we can all be made strong. That when we know that He is our Savior and Redeemer that we cannot have the fear, we won’t have the fear to say "I believe in Christ, He is my King" (Hymns #135).
Every day of our lives we are faced with choices similar to what Peter had to make. Like Peter, we have the same question before us: What Kind of witness will I be?"
Peter is the greatest example we have of true courage and true change of heart. Taking something good and making it better, and then changing it into the best. So that he could be a great example not only to the people of his time, but all the generations after.
I hope one day I can feel worthy to have the names of two of the greatest men to walk the Earth over my heart, on my nametag, Jesus Christ, and PETERs.
I love you