Malvern Minute
Malvern Minute

Today’s Daily Reflection

From Mark Poletunow


Every day, Mark Poletunow, Malvern Retreat House’s President, takes time to reflect and pray about the daily reading. Take a minute to join him as he illuminates the scriptures.

 

A Minute from Malvern 
            
September 22, 2018 - Saturday of the Twenty-Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
.
Father John Meyers, Rector
.
Click for: Readings for the day (From the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops)

 

Gospel Lk 8:4-15

When a large crowd gathered, with people from one town after another
journeying to Jesus, he spoke in a parable.
"A sower went out to sow his seed.
And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path and was trampled,
and the birds of the sky ate it up.
Some seed fell on rocky ground, and when it grew,
it withered for lack of moisture.
Some seed fell among thorns,
and the thorns grew with it and choked it.
And some seed fell on good soil, and when it grew,
it produced fruit a hundredfold."
After saying this, he called out,
"Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear."

Then his disciples asked him
what the meaning of this parable might be.
He answered,
"Knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of God
has been granted to you;
but to the rest, they are made known through parables
so that they may look but not see, and hear but not understand.

"This is the meaning of the parable.
The seed is the word of God.
Those on the path are the ones who have heard,

but the Devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts
that they may not believe and be saved.
Those on rocky ground are the ones who, when they hear,
receive the word with joy, but they have no root;
they believe only for a time and fall away in time of temptation.
As for the seed that fell among thorns,
they are the ones who have heard, but as they go along,
they are choked by the anxieties and riches and pleasures of life,
and they fail to produce mature fruit.
But as for the seed that fell on rich soil,
they are the ones who, when they have heard the word,
embrace it with a generous and good heart,
and bear fruit through perseverance."

-I like to call this parable “The Inadequate Farmer” because anyone who does gardening know that before planting the ground must be prepared- weeding, removing stones, and setting up good borders, etc. 

-If by the time you reach the parking lot after Mass you have forgotten the Gospel, you are like the footpath.

-If you are excited by a retreat or other religious experience but run out of enthusiasm by whatever else happens afterwards, you are like the seed among the rocks.

-If you find there is a competition going on inside you between doing good or doing what only feels good, you are like the ground overgrown with weeds.

-When a plant bears fruit, it does not get the benefit of the fruit.  That is a gift for others.

Questions for Discussion & Decision:

  • At Mass, how well do I prepare to hear God? Do I expect God to speak to me through the readings and preaching?
  • When was the last time I received a life-changing message from God? What did I do in response to it?
  • What do I need to do differently to prepare not only to receive all God has for me, but to allow it to grow within me and bear fruit?
  • How has the spiritual fruit of others fed me?
  • How might I better produce the Fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-25) in my life?

Let us pray! 

Dear Lord, it is my desire to be fruitful in my life

 and Lord I know that fruitfulness means that I need to abide in You,

just as You have commanded all those that are Your children.

so that the Father may be glorified in my life.

 Teach me Lord to abide in You and to find my true rest in You

 for I know that Your banner over me is love –

a love that gave its fullest expression on the cross at Calvary.

I ask that I may be a vessel

 through whom You would be pleased to work

 so that I may bear much good fruit of the Spirit

and not to produce dead works of the flesh in my own strength.

Lord I do not want to be a barren branch

that lives for my self

but one that grows in grace,

matures in the faith

 and comes to an ever deepening knowledge of You day by day…

 knowing that it is only as I rest and abide and remain in You

that You are enabled to carry out Your good work within me.

Amen

Prosit!

Father John

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ENCOUNTERING DIVINE PHYSICIAN (see Gospel of Mark 5:21-43):

Consider joining the Men and Women of Malvern by deepening your personal relationship with Jesus and your commitment as a disciple through a weekend retreat.  See our website for details:  MalvernRetreat.com

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