Games/Ideas

The Weight of Love: A Poem About Peter from Youth 2019

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During the Imagine Dragons Communion service at youth. 2019, This original poem was performed by Dale Fredrickson. Its powerful look into the life of Peter would be a welcome addition to your next youth worship service.

The Weight of Love

I.
i am a storm chaser
i am a raging sea of curiosity
i am a strong wind of passion and action

i’ve built my life on the next catch
marketplace profits and
the mysteries of the sea
my net worth
i keep casting nets
my last payload
i’m a half a lake ahead

don’t ask me to make sense
of my feelings
i am my father’s son
i’m okay
i’m okay
i say over and over
especially when
no one is listening

he was the wind
that cut through
the aroma of dead fish
and seaweed
he said to me
“you are a boulder”
i laughed and burst out
“one who sinks”
he smiled and said
“i hope so”
“not today” i threw back

his friendship is a full sail
a snapping wind of discomfort
a smooth breeze of rest
he is the surging waves
unsettling my sailing seas
he called me a ‘rock’
i’m treading water
i’m afraid of drowning
i’m scared of losing
what keeps me afloat
my anchors of small-minded prejudice
my closed fists of comfort and confidence

II.

when they came to sink him
with their snares
their unreflective fears and
raging need for conformity
i raised my voice
‘you are not taking him’
your ear for my heart
my hands shake my sword falls
again and again
i’m caught by the words
of his net
my promises are hot air rising
my words are snagged wings
and my ears have rocks in them

the powers that be shouted
‘sedition’ and ‘blasphemy’
an us versus them blindness
anger and violence
they tore apart his body
they tore apart his body
they tore apart his body

as i watched rubbing my eyes
with trembling lips i said
“i don’t know him
i don’t know him
i don’t know him”
three times leave me alone
i’m just like them
i am a shipwreck
my ears are ringing
i am a coward
i am a castaway
my name is petrified
there’s no time for grieving
i’m going fishing.

III.

on the shoreline
of shattered seashells
and broken starfish
the risen one called
“hey boulder” he said
my heart’s in my sandals
i’m sinking with everyone
who feels the weight
of swords wielded
of promises broken
of mistakes and betrayals
with anointing oil on his lips
over a simple breakfast he asked
“do you love me?
do you love me?
do you love me?”
three times infinity 

When he's not with his four children and wonderful wife, Jeremy Steele is a teaching pastor at Christ United Methodist Church in Mobile, Alabama. He is passionate about engaging people with the movement of God and speaks across the US. He's also the author of Reclaiming the Lost Soul of Youth Ministry. For more about his other books, articles, and resources, see JeremyWords.com.

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