Support the Café
Search our site

In the weeds

In the weeds

Matthew 13:36-43

In the old-time Westerns it didn’t take much insight to tell the good guys from the bad guys, the white hats from the black hats. But real life is a lot more complicated and a lot less predictable. Great literature reflects that reality. Shakespeare’s bloodiest villains (Iago, Richard III, Macbeth) all cultivated virtuous, friendly, easy going manners to disarm their victims. While he looted their life savings, Bernie Madoff’s victims mistakenly felt blessed that such an apparently wise and good man was sharing his expertise with them.

In our gospel lesson for Sunday, Jesus reflects on the parable of the weeds: the paradox of sin flourishing side by side and sometimes indistinguishable from virtue. A farmer plants good seed; an enemy contaminates the field with weeds. The farmer decides to let them grow together and separate them at the harvest. Like the old Westerns, traditional interpretation often characterized people as either wheat or weeds – good guys or bad guys – black hats or white hats. But real life seldom offers such a binary choice.

We are more a struggling composite of venalities and virtues, ignorance and

enlightenment, sin and grace. Paradoxically we are all sinners, but we live in the certain hope of salvation through the grace of our risen Savior. As such we are not all wheat or all weed. We are not a single plant. Each of us is a whole field, loved and tended by our patient, merciful Creator.

If God can love us, care for us and forgive us in our sins. Can we not do the same for each other? Can we not love each other, weeds and all? When confused by the tangle of wheat and weeds, always opt for love. God will sort it all out in his good time.

Committed to a vocation that focuses on encountering God in the midst of everyday life, the Rev. David Sellery serves as an Episcopal priest that seeks to proclaim the good news of God in Christ in worship, pastoral care, education, stewardship, and congregational growth.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinmail

Café Comments?

Our comment policy requires that you use your real first and last names and provide an email address (your email will not be published). Comments that use non-PG rated language, include personal attacks, that are not provable as fact or that we deem in any way to be counter to our mission of fostering respectful dialogue will not be posted.

Facebooktwitterrss
Support the Café
Past Posts
2020_012
2020_013_B
2020_013_A

The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition.  The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity.  Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.

The opinions expressed at the Café are those of individual contributors, and, unless otherwise noted, should not be interpreted as official statements of a parish, diocese or other organization. The art and articles that appear here remain the property of their creators.

All Content  © 2017 Episcopal Café