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Imagining the Lectionary: Parables, Foxgloves and the morphology of discipleship (Proper 10A, Ordinary 15A)

Reflection accompanying image “foxgloves and bee illustrating the morphology of discipleship”.
When the sun came out after a day of prolonged rain the foxgloves dripped and glistened in the clear light and swayed ever so gently in the warming breeze. As Bumble bees buzzed around the garden looking for food, one after another landed on the large lips of the bell-like flowers and then crawled inside to seek precious nectar. After a while each emerged liberally sprinkled with yellow pollen. Both insect and plant had been true to their mutually beneficial ecological covenant.

Jesus was a very visual theologian. He noticed his surroundings and drew out of them image-rich stories which opened up the nature of God's Kingdom dream in the imaginations of those who would listen and make the effort to picture deep meanings for themselves. His parables dealt with everyday life, and we can almost see him pointing to sparrows, lilies, fig trees, mustard seeds, weeds and agricultural labourers and framing God-resplendent values as he tells these characteristically enigmatic stories.



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