Metropolitan Moses of Portland and the West Coast gave this beautiful homily on the importance of repentance and purity of heart. Saint Peter is an important example to look at. Despite St Peter’s failings, he never lost faith in Christ’s mercy: he always knew who to turn to when his faith otherwise failed him. There is an icon of his very faith. When St Peter was walking on water, he began to lose faith in Christ as fear overtook him, thinking about the depth of the water and the high waves, and he started to sink. Yet, he remembered who to turn to, calling out to Christ, “Lord, save me!”. May the Lord grant us that we never lose faith in His mercy, and remember to call out the words of St Peter in times when our faith is otherwise lacking.
He reasoned also concerning the great depth of the sea, which as a fisherman he knew so well. These things filled his mind and he became distracted, even in the presence of our Saviour. His faith began to fail him and he started to sink; yet, even in his failings, he knew Who to turn to and cried out, “Lord, save me!” (Matt 14:30).
His faith failed him, but he did not lose faith in God’s mercy. These things are recorded for us that we keep the remembrance of this faith in God’s mercy for times of need. Saint Peter demonstrated what the Holy Fathers call “praiseworthy audacity.” We should always trust in God’s mercy and even be audacious in our pursuit of it. Yet, we have to act in order to find mercy. We have to find a way to repent.