Parables were intended to have shock value. They were intended to illicit response; whether immediate or in time, it made little difference. Surely we're missing something if a parable doesn't effect us right? Maybe that is why GBU didn't get the critical acclaim it deserved when first released. It needed time.
If you get a moment, read the parable in Luke 12:13-21
The easiest response is to think a parable applies to other people. But as Dr. Roberta Bondi noted in The Five-Day Academy of Spiritual Formation in North Carolina this past fall, the early fathers of the church were, "...convinced judgementalism was about the greatest sin."
Don't put it on the clergy to make it easy for you either. In Adam Clarke's Commentary on this passage, he writes about judging, saying, "...a minister of Christ ought not concern himself with secular affairs, any farther than charity and the order of discipline require it...He who preaches salvation to all should never make himself a party man; otherwise he loses the confidence, and consequently the opportunity of doing good to the party against whom he decides."
No, there is more going on here. Take a listen to mp3 and be sure to also visit www.globalrichlist.com. We could use a little shock.
May I ask? What response does this parable raise up in you?
May I suggest? Take a Bible into your storage spaces. Pull up a chair and then read it again out loud. Look at your stuff. What response do you feel now?