Today’s household object is the alarm clock, and the Bible passages are John 13:36-38 and John 16:25-27.

Alarm clocks are useful in waking us each morning; nature’s alarm clock is the cockerel! The cockerel (or rooster) features in the Easter story as a warning to us: Peter, full of confidence, proclaims his ability to follow Jesus even to the point of laying down his life, but Jesus is well aware of what is to come and predicts his denial ‘before the cock crows.’ Sure enough, within hours Jesus is arrested, and Peter denies that he even knows the man. It is the cockerel’s crowing which brings Jesus’s words back to his memory and causes him to realise his sin.

Fortunately for Peter – and us – this is not the end of the story. Peter found forgiveness and further service; his sin did not define the rest of his life. The cockerel’s crowing heralds the start of a new day; the Lord’s compassions are ‘new every morning.’ (Lam 3:23) With God, we are given ‘countless second chances’ (‘Second Chances’, Rend Collective); the cross points to God’s forgiveness and mercy.