Parables

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“Maybe Jesus is saying: … Throw yourself into what you love or simply what you do. Let God sort out the rest. It’s not your problem, and that’s a gift unto itself. And if you should happen to find yourself on the wanting end of what’s deserved, God’s loving hand extended is gift indeed.

But even more radical than this message of God’s generosity, perhaps, is a quiet, secondary message of these parables, as understated as their responsible characters. Namely, we who are trying and doing and being as well as we can, already have it all at our fingertips. All the time. Our rightful wages (in the language of today’s parable) are an absolute certainty. Our inheritance (in the language of the Prodigal Son) is ever before us, for the asking and for the taking, any time, anyhow. Is it possible that by looking at what others get, we are blind to what we have? In critically contemplating God’s grace for others, we stub our toes on the grace that is ever before us. What exuberant lives are ours! Right now and evermore.”
( from Kristin Swenson who is associate professor of religious studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. She is also author of Bible Babel: Making Sense of the Most Talked About Book of All Time)

 

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