dirty pretty precious

24 09 2009

dirty pretty precious

dirty pretty precious

Treasure!! Oo-arrr. It’s all a bit pirates really. The hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold discovered recently and in the news today, has been officially classified as ‘treasure’ (instead of…??) and will apparently ‘redefine the Dark Ages’ (to “Dark with a Golden-Hue Ages”, perhaps?), I couldn’t help but see some parallels. It ties in with yesterdays thoughts on beauty in unlikely places.  So I wrote a thing.

treasure in a field
has much power to wield over many jealous
zealous
precious
treasure-in-a-field
hunters

with their beep beep treasure detectors
looking for shiny metal reflectors
the treasure-in-a-field collectors

modern day gold prospectors

treasure in a field is buried so no-one finds it and the Man he told a story about it
someone who is so excited when he un-hides it
he sells all he has to buy it
not just the treasure but the whole muddy field

the treasure in a field
all covered in mud and weeds
the kingdom of heaven in beauty revealed
dirty pretty precious

so much more than golden saxon treasure
the treasure of a distant heaven
plummeting to earth and being discovered
in a muddy field
and we discover it was there all along

only we hadn’t noticed
doh

I don’t want the treasure I want the whole muddy field

(Matt 13.44)

your beauty is there to be found...

your beauty is there to be found...

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3 responses

25 09 2009
edgsoni

Although Christians tend to think of their journeys as a walk in linear terms (i.e. from A to Z, taking all the alphabetical stops along the way), maybe that’s not really how faith unfolds?
A better picture might be that of a someone working in a field. Sometimes we venture out of our field; but for the most part, we work in the same field and with the same soil all our lives. We look at our field a lot. Sometimes we like it, sometimes we hate it. Sometimes it’s just what it is and we are where we are.
We plough up the field of our life every now and then; because we choose to, or because we have to. Or else nature/life/God does it for us. Sometimes, it’s just a gentle hoeing, to scratch some weeds off the surface; other times, we dig more deeply. Sometimes our soil is good to work with; sometimes it’s poor and/or difficult. We periodically unearth new things in our field that we didn’t realise were there to be discovered, or which we had buried (and perhaps forgotten). We regularly and optimistically sow new seeds; some of which flourish, many of which probably don’t. As we grow stronger in faith and more experienced at farming in our field, hopefully we learn to dig deeper and more purposefully. That way, we might get to root out the pernicious stuff well below the surface and prepare better foundations, so that God can get more of His water and miracle-gro nutrients down to where we need them most. So we can establish stronger roots and produce better fruit in future.
And maybe it’s only when we sell our treasure and buy the whole field that we realise the whole field was ours in the first place and the treasure is still in the field?
If we don’t come home muddy sometimes, we haven’t really been gardening. And if we haven’t really been gardening, we’ll never really learn how to grow…

26 09 2009
Kevin

Exactly! And that’s I am sure why Jesus used so much organic imagery in his story-telling – because it reflects so much better the realities of life and faith, with their ups and downs, rather than our typical ‘mechanistic’ approach, product of the industrial revolution, which plays into the human tendency towards classifying and systematising everything. So we turn growing a garden into a machine generating formulas; organic images into dogma.

In “This Beautiful Mess” Rick McKinley uses the image of the pastor as gardener, working with the ‘soil of the soul’. I quote at length because its a great image:

“What I do is more like gardening than like writing or making music. I work with the soil of the soul. It’s more like I have dirt under my fingernails and a pile of horse manure that I’m sifting into the dirt. I pull weeds and water and think about the harvest. Everything in the soil is dying.It is one giant pile of decomposition that ust happens to look like a church. Even the seed dies. Then the miracle. Out of death comes life…” (p13) (http://www.wesleyowen.com/WesleyOwenSite/product/9781590525012.htm)

I’m going to go and get muddy…

26 11 2009
Kevin

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