Gospel Reflection: Eleventh Sunday of Ordinary Time – June 14
Malvern Minute

 

ELEVENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

JUNE 14, 2015

Alleluia, Alleluia

The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower.

All who come to him will live forever.

Alleluia, Alleluia.

 

The Gospel of Saint Mark 4: 26-34

Jesus said to the crowds: “This is how it is with the kingdom of God;
it is as if a man were to scatter seed on the land and would sleep and rise night and day and through it all the seed would sprout and grow, he knows not how.

Of its own accord the land yields fruit, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear.  And when the grain is ripe, he wields the sickle at once, for the harvest has come.”

He said, “To what shall we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable can we use for it? It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth.  But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.”

With many such parables he spoke the word to them as they were able to understand it.  Without parables he did not speak to them, but to his own disciples he explained everything in private.

The Gospel of the Lord

REFLECTION

Today we arrive back at the Ordinary cycle of the Liturgical Year concentrating on the Gospel of Mark for our study and prayer until the First Sunday of Advent.

In an agrarian society, people are very attentive to the activities of farming and herding that sustain them with employment and food.  Consequently, at the time of Jesus stories and teachings using images from these experiences would be very useful in transferring understanding of deeper realities, like the Kingdom of God.

Today’s parables attempt to create this parallel between daily life and eternal life.  However, each listener must be open to hearing new things and be willing to probe its application to his/her own life.  To the degree of openness and effort one applies, there is understanding and potential enlightenment, but not all listeners of the parables or the Gospel are willing.   However, for the open-of–heart, Jesus is willing to provide help: to his own disciples he explained everything in private.

This divine assistance in understanding and enlightenment is provided even for today’s listeners like you and me.  When we reverently read the Gospel and pray over the text, Jesus Christ is at our side — Christ is truly present in the Word.  Jesus is there to reveal the deeper meaning of His words and to help us see their application to our lives as students of so great a master teacher.

Therefore, we should approach the Sacred Scriptures as if we were fertile and open soil desiring to receive the sacred seed, God’s Word.  On His part, God desires to plant the seed of His presence deep within us.   Through His grace, the seed within us grows even though we do not know how, or can measure its growth.   It is sufficient for us to return to His word daily and allow God to water and nurture His growth within us.  In His time God will harvest what He has planted and made grow.

None of us should feel too small or inadequate for the work of God because God is the sower and His divine Son is the seed that He plants within us.  Like the mustard seed of the Gospel, God will transform us into a great plant able to house others in love within our branches and arms.  This is the work of God who is ever vigilant and diligent in all His works.  By His hands the Kingdom of God grows in us and among us!

                   The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower.

                             All who come to him will live forever.

WE BELIEVE, AND THEREFORE SPEAK (2 Corinthians 4:13)

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