A Fragile Stone: The Emotional Life of Simon Peter

A Fragile Stone: The Emotional Life of Simon Peter

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by Michael Card
     
 

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Simon Peter emerges from the pages of the Gospels with greater clarity and definition than any other person except Jesus. He is the Rock, the unambiguous leader of the Twelve. He could even be described as Jesus' best friend. But that is not all. "He was a fragile stone," writes Michael Card, "completely dependent upon his Master and Friend, even as Jesus had insisted

Overview

Simon Peter emerges from the pages of the Gospels with greater clarity and definition than any other person except Jesus. He is the Rock, the unambiguous leader of the Twelve. He could even be described as Jesus' best friend. But that is not all. "He was a fragile stone," writes Michael Card, "completely dependent upon his Master and Friend, even as Jesus had insisted on his dependence on the Father."

In this landmark book, songwriter and musician Michael Card explores the dynamic, contradictory life of the apostle Peter. The fruit of years of careful study, A Fragile Stone revisits well-known passages and discovers unexpected insights, painting a portrait of Peter that is both familiar and jarring. With a scope spanning the entire New Testament, Card reveals how the impetuous fisherman of the Gospels was transformed into the pivotal leader of the early church.

The life of Simon Peter thus serves as a model for Christian discipleship, offering hope that we likewise can be changed as Jesus calls us to follow him.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Card, a Dove Award-winning songwriter and author or co-author of more than 14 books (including Scribbling in the Sand, one of PW's Best Religion Books for 2002), here turns his attention to the Apostle Peter, who he says has been ignored by contemporary Protestants and Catholics alike. Card delves deep into the "emotional life" of Peter, the disciple Jesus called "the Rock." We are wrong when we assume that this title came because of Peter's strength or perfect stability, Card warns; Peter was a flawed man and an unlikely choice to be a foundation. He did, however, eventually become this sure foundation: Card traces Peter's evolution through the Gospels and the Book of Acts to the mature expressions of leadership and care for the flock that we see in his two epistles. In those letters, Peter extends the call of discipleship to all who confess Christ, using the same title Jesus once conferred exclusively upon him to call others to be "living stones" of God's spiritual temple. As always, Card offers some stunning exegesis and biblical insights, pointing readers to connections they might not otherwise have made. (In the post-resurrection scene where Jesus asks Peter three times whether Peter loves him, for example, Card posits that Jesus is giving Peter the opportunity to make restitution for his three earlier denials. "Painful as the questions are, they are an expression of Jesus' creative forgiveness.") This book is original, compelling and full of joy. (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Brennan Manning
"[Michael Card's] unabashed love for Peter shines through these pages and permits him to probe the emotional complexity of the man without romance or sentimentality. . . . Card is not a neutral, dispassionate observer when Jesus dismantles Peter's false self of inner agitation, drivenness, bravado and emotional turmoil in order to shape a new creation who will become the unquestioned leader of the apostolic community. A Fragile Stone speaks to wobbly disciples who never seem to get it all together and to naive leaders who think they have. Michael Card has written a lyrical love song about Peter, and personally, I found the melody contagious."
Shannon Whiting
Down-to-earth and insightful, A Fragile Stone offers a heart connection to a gospel story that many long-time Christians are without. Michael Card's forward portrayal of Simon Peter's emotional life reflects a more personal image of what it means to befriend Christ and to find identity in him.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780851117850
Publisher:
InterVarsity Press
Publication date:
01/01/2003
Pages:
200

What People are saying about this

Brennan Manning
"[Michael Card's] unabashed love for Peter shines through these pages and permits him to probe the emotional complexity of the man without romance or sentimentality. . . . Card is not a neutral, dispassionate observer when Jesus dismantles Peter's false self of inner agitation, drivenness, bravado and emotional turmoil in order to shape a new creation who will become the unquestioned leader of the apostolic community. A Fragile Stone speaks to wobbly disciples who never seem to get it all together and to naive leaders who think they have. Michael Card has written a lyrical love song about Peter, and personally, I found the melody contagious."
Brennan Manning, author of A Glimpse of Jesus (from the foreword)

Meet the Author

In a career that spans 30 years, Michael Card has recorded over 31 albums, authored or co-authored over 24 books, hosted a radio program, and written for a wide range of magazines. An award-winning musician and performing artist, he has penned such favorites as "El Shaddai," "Immanuel" and many other songs. He has branched his ministry beyond music and written numerous books, including A Sacred Sorrow, A Violent Grace, The Parable of Joy and Sleep Sound in Jesus (a children's book). He has also written the Biblical Imagination Series, with a book and accompanying music CD for each of the four gospels.

A graduate of Western Kentucky University with a bachelor's and master's degree in biblical studies, Card also serves as mentor to many younger artists and musicians, teaching courses on the creative process and calling the Christian recording industry into deeper discipleship. Card lives in Tennessee with his wife and four children.

Manning is the author of A Glimpse of Jesus (HarperSanFrancisco, 2003).

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