The Charcoal Fire (Revised)

As the sun rose this [Easter] morning, a few of us warmed ourselves around a fire outside the church. Two charcoal fires were recalled, involving Peter, “the Rock” who crumbled like a piece of shale, and the risen Christ, who would re-create the scene to change the story from denial to welcome, forgiveness, and a commissioning to love.

Steve Shoemaker Verse, “The Charcoal Fire”

THE CHARCOAL FIRE

Charcoal Fire
Three times
Denial:

I do not know the man
I do not know the man
I do not know the man

Charcoal Fire
Three times
Forgiveness:

Do you love me?
Do you love me?
Do you love me?

Charcoal Fire
Three Times
Commission:

Feed my sheep
Feed my sheep
Feed my sheep

Steve Shoemaker
Urbana, IL
April 8, 2012

Gordon C. Stewart, author of Be Still! Departure from Collective Madness (2017 Wipf and Stock), April 23, 2022. This piece from 2012 is edited and republished in memory of Steve Shoemaker. Steve is sitting on a Bristlecone Pine stump above the tree line in Colorado during a gathering of seminary friends. Mutual friend Anna Strong and canine companion stand by him.

4 thoughts on “The Charcoal Fire (Revised)

  1. Thanks for the second time reading, the co text helped me relate to doubt, fear, humanness of Peter. Yet he too was loved, belonged, and became a bigger better man for having failed. I need many second chances😊♥️

    Liked by 1 person

    • So good to hear from you, Chris. Anyone who’s honest with themselves is a Peter, a Judas, James and John, a Thomas et.al. We’ve all failed. The need for a second chance repeats itself many times. You know that. I know that. But, as often as we fail, we are lifted up, and emboldened to live with courage because, as Bill Coffin often reminded us, “there is more love in God than there is sin in us.”

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for the second time reading, the co text helped me relate to doubt, fear, humanness of Peter. Yet he too was loved, belonged, and became a bigger better man for having failed. I need many second chances😊♥️

    Liked by 1 person

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