From the Licensed Lay Minister - 23rd August 2020

I am a Winnie the Pooh fan and it is quite surprising that the bear of very little brain often says important things that we would do well to remember. A passage which I found worth a second thought was:-

‘Rabbit’s clever’, said Pooh thoughtfully,

‘Yes’ said Piglet, ‘Rabbit’s clever’,

‘And he has Brain’

‘Yes’ said Piglet, ‘Rabbit has Brain’.

There was a long silence.

‘I suppose’, said Pooh, ‘that that’s why he never understands anything’.

This statement from a small bear is filled with wisdom. How often have we met a very intelligent, educated person and after some thought decided that they do not possess a grain of common sense? They may be able to read their Bible in the original Greek but then you find that they have planted all their tulips upside down.

Jesus had immense common sense – he met people where they were and instead of trying to get them to understand by way of some highly convincing intellectual argument – a thing of which I am sure he was very capable – he explained by way of the things they knew on a daily basis. How many stories are there in the Bible which are based on shepherding, viniculture, fishing and fig trees? These are all things which the people understood and worked with all the time, they knew exactly where Jesus was coming from. No further explanation necessary. So often when Jesus tried to explain things to the disciples in a rather more academic way they missed the point but when he tried more grounded lifestyle versions they could relate to those stories more readily – not that sometimes he still had to explain word for word, as in the case of the sower and the seed, which left the disciples floundering!

It’s easy to understand in retrospect but would we have done any better if Jesus was telling us a parable?

Jo Johnson
Licensed Lay Minister