Monday of the Seventeenth Week in Ordinary Time
Malvern Minute

 

Monday of the Seventeenth Week in Ordinary Time

July 27, 2020

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry

 

Book of the Prophet Jeremiah 13:1-11

Psalm (Deuteronomy) 32

Matthew 13-31-35

 

Friends, there are powerful images in today’s readings.  First, God does an earthly demonstration for Jeremiah by using a very memorable image by showing He is as close to Israel as a “loin cloth is as close to our bodies.”  God has Jeremiah put his loin cloth in a place where it will rot.  This demonstrates how the people have neglected their relationship with God and let it rot.  It is a powerful reflection for all of us to help us not take our personal relationship with God for granted.    

In our Gospel narrative, Jesus uses two powerful images to help us understand this new relationship, which He calls the “Kingdom of God.”  We can see that He is addressing our impatience.  These images are especially helpful for or us who are used to things happening faster and faster.  At times we may be tempted to say, “Lord, I don’t see it happening!”  At times we might even say, “it’s not working; there’s no movement here; no growth; people aren’t responding; your grace isn’t having an effect.  What do I do now?”  

Often times our impatience is with ourselves and the slow pace of our ability to change or respond or-be-selfish ourselves.  Most of the time, however, we are simply impatient with others.  We can’t see any big change or growth in loved ones or friends or colleagues or fellow parishioners.  We just say there is no growth, no grace at all.  Doesn’t this sound like our impatience is with God?

Jesus tells us that the way God works is different than our ways.  Small seeds matter.  They shouldn’t be counted for nothing.  The slow, almost imperceptible growth of yeast, in swelling up a batch of dough, is a perfect image for God’s grace within us and among us. 

It really is about our trust in God.   It is also about opening our eyes to be shown what has been “hidden” from the eyes of so many.  With this revelation we can appreciate, value, have confidence in, be consoled by the tiny seeds and the marvelous power of yeast.

Question of the Day:  How will you ask God for patience when your heart is troubled with the crosses of your life?

Prayer:  Dear Jesus, help me be less impatient today.  Slow me down.  Let me breathe at a different pace, until I recognize your work before my eyes.  Allow me to savor your “subtle” ways, your gentle movement, and Your quiet growth.  Let me smile with you at how very small things can make a very big difference.   And, when I can’t see it, let me trust that you are always there, with me, within me, around me, inviting me to believe and to live with confident hope in your ways.  Amen.

Please continue to pray for the victims of the Coronavirus and for all who are affected by this unprecedented pandemic as well as for peace in our country and in our world.

Prosit!

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