What a treat to be at a retreat where Walter Wangerin, Jr. was the guest speaker. Walt, as he likes to be called, is a gentle pastor, renowned author and gifted storyteller. Many of us traveled a fair distance and arrived in the early evening. We expected our first session to be in the morning, since we were weary travelers. However, Walt held his first two-hour session that night. Amazingly, no heads nodded and no yawns were noticed. He kept us spellbound with his down-to-earth stories about life and faith, hope and healing, challenge and change.
Jesus, the ultimate storyteller, shared short stories wherever he went. Stories about life and faith, hope and healing, challenge and change. Parables. Some brought comfort, but others dug deep into the human experience and pushed the listener outside the box and beyond the borders. A parable like the one at the beginning of Mark 12 can make one squirm a bit, trying to make sense of it all. But it is Jesus speaking to you and me, and perhaps today his words will strike a new chord and move us to explore more of his short stories and the depth of his large love.
Jesus, wonderful storyteller, open my eyes to read and my ears to hear your stories anew. Amen. — LW