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The Parable of the Meringues

One day, the disciples attended a car boot sale near Pontypool.  They found a tent where foods and drinks were being sold, and one man had a whole table full of meringues that he was selling.  The sight of the colourful, sweet meringues lured them over to the man’s table.  After each disciple purchased several meringues, the man’s table was nearly empty.  The disciples realised that the meringues would not last on a warm, sunny day, and they were hungry, so they ate them all at once.  The meringues were wonderfully sweet, airy, and light, and the disciples licked their fingers from the sugar as they finished the treats.

When he arrived at the tent, their master saw them licking their fingers and noticed the nearly empty table of meringues.  ‘Tell me,’ said the Master, ‘Why are you licking yourselves?’  ‘We have just eaten some meringues, and the sugar has stuck to our fingers,’ one of them replied.  ‘Did the meringues fill you up, since it is lunchtime?’  ‘No,’ they replied.  ‘Are the meringues healthy food?’  ‘No, they are made from egg white and sugar mostly,’ one of them answered. ‘Do you still have money to buy lunch?’ asked the master.  ‘It seems we have spent all our money on the meringues,’ replied a disciple.  ‘Did you like the meringues?’  ‘Oh, yes!’ they all said at once, ‘they are delightful!’

Then the master called them to sit with him under a tree.  ‘Beware of the meringues of today's culture.  It is a colourful and sweet sounding message, but it has no substance.  It is not filling, for it does not satisfy the needs of your souls.  Nor is it good for you, even though you may find it delightful.  Rather, it is a message that encourages you to indulge yourselves with the desires of your flesh.  Rather buy from me the bread of life and be well fed on healthy food for your souls.  But the person who proclaims to you nothing more than the message of your own culture is like the man who sells meringues.’