Summary: A brave knight rescues a princess. An elderly man in 1944 opens his door. A church in 1995 goes carol singing. A missionary struggles to convert anyone. And I am lousy at dating.
"A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell on the path, and the birds came and ate them up. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and they sprang up quickly, since they had no depth of soil. But when the sun rose, they were scorched; and since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and brought forth grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty."
I don’t know about you, but in my teens and early twenties I was terrible at dating. I would be interested in a girl - but then I would be too nervous and shy and the moment would pass and I would have missed my chance. It’s seems really stupid - after all, if I asked her out, what’s the worst that could happen? She could say no. It’s not like she was going to boil me in oil, she’s just say no. And I would be no worse off than if I hadn’t asked her. But she could always say yes.
I remember someone saying to me at uni that the hottest girls often ended up with the guys who were the worst players. His theory went like this. Most guys looked at the hot girls and thought “you are out of my league” so were too frightened to ask the hot girls out. So considering their looks the really hot girls has surprisingly few guys ask them out.
But the players made a pass at everyone. Most of the time most of the girls just told them where to go. The players didn’t mind - they just turned their attention to the next girl. When they got to the really hot girls - well most people were too scared to ask those girls out. So the girls were actually really flattered when someone finally asked them out. So they end up dating the player….
It was 1944. The old man sat alone in his sitting room, feeling depressed. His life felt a waste. Once he had been full of hope. As a young man he had taught Sunday school at his local church. For years child after child had gone through his classes. Yet it seemed to make no difference. Seven years ago he had given it all up - what was the point?
And then a knock at the door. He shuffled up out of his chair and went to open it. And there in front of him stood a twenty year old soldier in uniform. “Are you Mr Jones?”
In December 1995 the Church I had just joined went carol singing. I don’t think I had ever actually been carol singing before. I was new, so I can only imagine what sort of conversations might have gone on gone on among “the important people”
I don’t know- perhaps some questioned that it wasn’t raising money for the church? It’s all very well collecting money for charity, but how are we going to pay our common fund. And maybe the Vicar said “this is about sharing the Good News - we don’t want people’s money,we want them to hear about God’s love.
Perhaps some people questioned “Was it worth it - you put all that effort into singing around the streets and did anyone ever come to church as a result of it? Rather than just scattering the seed everywhere, shouldn’t we focus on people who are more likely to respond to the Gospel?....
Once upon a time in a land far far away a wicked witch put a spell on a beautiful princess and she fell asleep for a 100 years. Only the kiss of a brave knight could wake her from her curse.
So the wise old owl flew out to find a knight to rescue the princess.
The first knight he came to -
“Twit tawoo - come and rescue the princess - Tawoo - You must kiss her to wake her from her 100 years sleep - there will be many challenges on the quest. There will be thousand foot high wall of thorns you must cut through. Before that there will be Ogres you must fight, and before that a long journey, first you go to the crossroads but the gnarled oak….
But before the owl could finish what he was saying the brave knight had already rushed off. Which was fine until he got to the crossroads with the gnarled oak and he didn’t know which way to go so he went left and got more and more lost. And then an elf appeared and offered him another quest, so he abandoned the first quest and started on that. But again he didn’t listen and while he was wandering through the forest a Gnome appeared appealing for him to take on another quest - which again he rushed into without listening properly and ….