Embrace the Mustard Seed Moments
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 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.”
“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.
In this Gospel reading Jesus compares the Kingdom of God to a mustard seed that “when it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants.” However much we seem to get frustrated with this, God seems to want good things to start small and grow over time in our spiritual life. This increases our dependence on Him and invites us into further spiritual discipline. I believe the same discipline applies to our lives.
Our spirit may know this to be true, but our flesh is often weak in accepting this spiritual discipline. We are tempted to say, “You are God and can do anything. Why don’t you just make this happen?” Why does God work in the way He does? Why does God allow things to start small and grow over time?
Perhaps some prayer and reflection on what this Gospel speaks to you are warranted. In reflection on this passage for this blog I have a few reflections I would like to offer for consideration:
- God wants to involve us in the process. As our creator, He rejoices in our freedom, our intellect, our will, and our creativity. He plants seeds in us and He invites us to cultivate them over time. He is interested in our cooperation with His divine will.
- We may not be the people we need to be yet to realize our visions. When things start small, we learn, grow, and build character through our trials that will be invaluable to us as we grow. Perhaps if things grew too quickly, we wouldn’t be ready to handle the quick growth.
- God knows that we have a tendency to take things for granted. Without the adversity and challenge, we may not value the results as much as we should. We may lose our gratitude and humility or become complacent.
The challenge for all of us lies in being patient and embracing our mustard seed moments. We may not fully understand why God allows things to grow over time, but we should trust that He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows what is good for us on earth and in heaven.