Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Hard and Soft (04/23/09)
- TITLE: The Rock
By Scott Cook
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The waves gently rocked the boat as he thought back to the events that had stunned him and shocked him into fear.
He closed his eyes tightly and silently wept, then cursed, and wept again.
His Lord, his Rabbi, his friend was gone.
“Why, Lord? Why!” he shouted silently into the despair of his mind.
Another silent groan and then, suddenly . . .
Was he not Peter? Was he not “the rock?”
The first out of the boat. The first to draw a sword.
One of the first to run to the empty tomb. One of the first disciples.
“Who am I?” He had said. “Thou art the Christ.”
Yes, he was Peter. He was the rock upon which this church would be built.
Then came the garden.
Torchlight flickering on the trees, the soft clink of hard armor.
Betrayal with a kiss. The betrayal of his Lord by a trusted companion.
A moment of blood and violence. A soft rebuke, a wound healed.
It all happened so fast. The arrest. The flight into the darkness.
He remembered the hard stones of the courtyard.
He remembered the smoky air, the cold, the isolation as he stood there trying to make sense of it.
Then two young girls and a mob.
The accusations. The denial. The crowing of the rooster.
The tears flowed freely as the pain overwhelmed him.
He composed himself and stood up, looking toward the shore.
A man was standing there waving to him.
“Have you caught any fish,” he called. “No,” was Peter’s reply.
The others were now awake and listening.
The man again called, “Cast your net on the right side of your boat.”
“Why?” He thought, “It’s no use.”
He heard John and Nathaniel readying the net, so he turned to help.
They cast and began to draw the net and, suddenly, there were fish by the hundreds!!
John said, “It’s the Lord!” He jumped into the sea and swam to the beach.
Jesus had provided breakfast and it was cooking as he helped the others draw the net to shore.
As they ate, it was hard for him to look at this man he had denied.
When they had finished eating, he could feel the gaze of Jesus upon him.
“Simon, do you love me?” he asked softly. “Yes, Lord. I am your friend.”
“Simon, do you love me?” he questioned again.
It was so hard to hold back the tears as he softly whispered, “Yes, Lord, you know that I am your friend.”
“Simon, son of John, are you my friend?”
The hard demeanor cracked. The tears flowed freely.
“Lord, you know all things; you know I love you.”
“Tend my sheep.”
He had run in fear and agony that night from the courtyard.
But he knew he was forgiven.
He was Peter.
He would never run again.
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