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Five Smooth Stones for Pastoral Work [Paperback]

By Eugene H. Peterson (Author)
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Item description for Five Smooth Stones for Pastoral Work by Eugene H. Peterson...

: How can you improve your effectiveness as a pastor? Most current literature stresses up-to-date training and new techniques stemming from the behavioral sciences. But Peterson instead calls for a return to an "old" resource---the Bible! This treasury of practical theological insights shows how five Old Testament books provide a solid foundation for pastoral ministry.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Pages   251
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.97" Width: 6.05" Height: 0.71"
Weight:   0.75 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 1999
ISBN  0802806600  
ISBN13  9780802806604  

Availability  0 units.

More About Eugene H. Peterson

Eugene H. Peterson Eugene H. Peterson (born November 6, 1932), is a pastor, scholar, author, and poet. He has written over thirty books, including Gold Medallion Book Award winner The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language[1] (Navpress Publishing Group, 2002), a contemporary translation of the Bible.

Peterson was born in East Stanwood, Washington and grew up in Kalispell, Montana. He earned his B.A. in philosophy from Seattle Pacific University, his S.T.B. from New York Theological Seminary, and his M.A. in Semitic languages from Johns Hopkins University. He also holds several honorary doctoral degrees. In 1962, Peterson was a founding pastor of Christ Our King Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) in Bel Air, Maryland, where he served for 29 years before retiring in 1991. He was Professor of Spiritual Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia until retiring in 2006. He now lives in Montana.

Eugene H. Peterson currently resides in Vancouver. Eugene H. Peterson was born in 1932.

Eugene H. Peterson has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Experiencing God
  2. First Book Challenge
  3. Growing in Christ
  4. Lifeguide Bible Studies
  5. Message

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Clergy > Church Administration
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Clergy > General
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Clergy > Ministry
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Bible > General
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Spirituality > Inspirational

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Pastoral Help > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Five Smooth Stones for Pastoral Work?

A Pastoral tour through the Megilloth  Dec 27, 2006
The title of this book is somewhat misleading. It was a pleasant surprise to learn that the various chapters are a pastoral tour through the Megilloth, the five short books that are read at five of the Jewish annual religious observances.

This book by its very nature necessitates an emphasis on practical pastoral application. The various books of the Megilloth are studied insofar as they contribute to this emphasis. The Song of Solomon directs our congregations in prayer and praise, Ruth reminds them that they are part of God's ongoing story, Lamentations speaks to them in their pain, Ecclesiastes speaks to a life of wisdom (in page 154 a late date is accepted for the writing of this book for which Solomon has no part), and Esther is said to speak to community-building.

Peterson still seems to have the same chip on his shoulder that was expressed in his book "Working the Angles." In his introduction he states his opinion that Christian writers of the 20th century have little to commend themselves in assisting in the development of the pastoral craft. One wonders if this lack of commendation also applies to his writings, or only to everyone else's. Once he enters the body of his subject, he succeeds in finding pastoral applications to the five books of the Megilloth. At the same time, he seems to take no pastoral responsibility for the growth of a church, instead claiming that "congregations are large when there is social approval to be part of a religious establishment, small when there is not" (Page 209). Perhaps he has not read Carl George's book.

This books succeeds in reminding us to use these and other books of the Bible in the work of shepherding; to always connect such study to the congregation. Or as Peterson puts it: "After the Bible, the church roll is the most important book in the pastor's study" (Page 48).
Not Ministry As Usual  Mar 9, 2004
Eugene Peterson does not call us to practical ministry. He offers much more, a pastoral theology. In this particular volume he digs into several Old Teatament texts and encourages pastors to engage the work of Prayer-Directing, Story-Making, Pain-Sharing, Nay-Saying, and Community-Building. These themes have the capability of reigniting that inner passion for ministry and restoring that God-given youthful vision to the pastor who has become worn down from trying to run the church as a business. This book should be in the library of every pastor.
Excellent resource for preaching and community  May 29, 2000
Eugene Peterson is my mentor's mentor, and has become mine as well. His insight and mastery at the art of crafting words makes all of his books easy, enjoyable and highly challanging resources for spiritual formation, especially for the pastor.

In Five Smooth Stones, Peterson challanges us as pastors to lead our people through five somewhat obsure books of the Old Testament. These five books, Song of Solomon, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Ruth and Esther are wonderful tools for discovering some of the most important elements of Christian community.

In Song of Solomon, Peterson illuminates the challanges for us to seek intimacy in our personal relationships - but most of all intimacy with our God through prayer. In Lamentations, we are led to give validity to suffering. We are challenged to live out the full scope of suffering with each other in the midst of community, ultimatly being fully dependant upon the God who sustains us.

In Ecclesiastes, everything under the sun/Son is given meaning and time.

In Ruth, our commitments to community and to each other are emphasised. The power of going beyond what is required or expected are powerful tools that God uses to build true community, and even bring forth Messiah.

Esther is the call to community through taking risks for the sake of God's people, realizing that God would raise up another, if we choose not to not be a part of God's plan.

I have used this book as a primary resource for preaching these texts. As a pastor of a small rural church, and having worked in large suburban churches, I highly recomend this powerful resource to all who want to grow in spiritual depth and Christian community.


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