October 29, 2013

The Gospel Today 

Tuesday of the Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time 

Luke 13:18-21

Jesus said, “What is the Kingdom of God like?
To what can I compare it?
It is like a mustard seed that a man took and planted in the garden.
When it was fully grown, it became a large bush
and the birds of the sky dwelt in its branches.”

Again he said, “To what shall I compare the Kingdom of God?
It is like yeast that a woman took
and mixed in with three measures of wheat flour
until the whole batch of dough was leavened.”

Reflection (Sem. Enrico Terrel):

          In the Gospel passage, Jesus uses the imagery of the mustard seed and the yeast in order to demonstrate what the Kingdom of God is like. However, these two things are not just simple things in themselves. But they are things that have potential for further growth. The mustard seed has the potential to become a large shrub especially if it is planted and nourished. It can provide refuge to the birds. The yeast has the potential to become bread especially if it is mixed with measures of wheat flour. Once it becomes bread, it can provide nourishment to those who would eat it. Nevertheless, there is an important element that should be also present in order for the potentiality to become a reality. That is simply called human cooperation and participation.

          It is important for us to notice that a mustard seed will not become a large bush and a resting place of birds unless a farmer who recognizes the goodness of the seed, takes the initiative to plant the seed and to take care of it until it grows into a bush. The same thing is true for the yeast that would remain as yeast unless a baker takes it and mixes it with flour in order to make a batch of dough. God is always there to provide us the necessary graces that we need to have meaningful life with Him and in Him. We are given the word of God that provides us divine wisdom and inspiration. We are given the Body and Blood of Jesus for our daily spiritual nourishment and configuration with Christ. We have the Church that serves us as teacher of the truth and defender of our faith. We have the sacraments that can sanctify us. Nevertheless, everything depends on our choice based on our free will that God Himself respects. We have the choice either to accept or to reject what God is giving to us. The clincher of this is the truth that God will assess us in the end as to how we made use of our choices. The Kingdom of God has been offered to us? How did we respond to it?

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