Yes, it is this time again! Hi, and welcome to these minutes of Sunday reflection. In the Gospel reading today we get to explore the Parable of the Sower. It goes like this…
The Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew the 13th Chapter. (Matthew 13: 1-9, 18-23)
Glory to you, oh Lord!
That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. Such great crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat there, while the whole crowd stood on the beach. And he told them many things in parables, saying: “Listen! 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. Let anyone with ears listen!”
“Hear then the parable of the sower. When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what is sown in the heart; this is what was sown on the path. As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet such a person has no root, but endures only for a while, and when trouble or persecution arises on account of the word, that person immediately falls away. As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the lure of wealth choke the word, and it yields nothing. But as for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.”
The Gospel of our Lord.
Praise to you, oh Christ!
Grace and peace are yours from God our Father and from his Son Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Jesus was a great storyteller. I like the part where he says, “Let anyone with ears listen.” He just tells a story and leaves it to each one to be led by the Spirit to understand what they need in that moment.
But, in his role of Master to his disciples, he gives them an explanation. Even more, we are reading it from the writings of long ago, and in a different context, and we are making our own interpretation.
This is where we all start to identify what is what and who is who, are we sowers, seed, or what kind of soil, right? Perhaps, we began to ask, who are the bad soil types from among those we know?
Being completely honest, I think I have been ALL of those at one point or another in my life. David Leininger explained something similar. In my case, first it’s like some people talk to me and it is as they’re talking to a wall. – Seed falling on the path.
Sometimes I understand a great Christian concept, but I don’t follow through. – Stoney ground.
Other times I am super busy, and my personal spiritual nurturing gets all neglected. – Thorny ground.
However, there are times when I put into practice what I learn and make it a lifestyle. – Good soil. And I wish it was like that all the time, but my humanity is strong.
Anyhow, what was Jesus’ point here? Because when we place ourselves as a sower, we think we have responsibility for the end result. Or that we can be better soil for the Word of God. But we many times get discouraged because we believe everything is up to us.
The truth is that the point of Jesus story is at the end: The super GREAT harvest, a hundredfold, sixty, thirty. That’s huge! Better yet is when we understand that we have nothing to do with the end result, it is all up to God. If we are being what we claim to be, followers of Christ, we will BE the church and trust completely on God. We then plan actions to help the poor and needy. We realize that we need to develop uncomfortable relationships with people different than us. We take care of ourselves not to catch the Coronavirus and as we should, and all that, we must. We obey God’s Word written in Proverbs 22:3 “The clever see danger and hide; but the simple go on and suffer for it.” We stay home if we know we have to. And we are incredibly careful when needing to go out. Because trusting God, is not being negligent but obedient. We raise our voice about something unjust when the time is right. And we mourn together…when it hurts.
Let us pray,
Creator of everything, you saw your creation and said it was good. You entrusted us with responsibilities to also care for our bodies, other people, animals and the planet as a whole. We are trying, Lord. When we get discouraged, please aid us with your lifting Spirit. When we need to be challenged, give us courage. We place ourselves into your loving hands once again, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Thank you for taking these minutes to listen to this reflection. I would appreciate hearing from you. Would you be so kind and leaving me a comment below? Thank you! …. Now, receive the benediction:
The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord’s face shine on you with grace and mercy. The Lord look upon you with favor and give you peace. Amen.
+ Bishop Pedro Suarez
Florida-Bahamas Synod, ELCA