The common phrases we hear today are “the bigger, the better” and “the more, the merrier”! Many companies want to be the largest and some people want to live in the biggest house, drive the biggest car and so on.
Today’s Gospel reading presents a contrast to that in two brief parables. They both compare the reign of God to seeds. In the first one, the seed grows slowly day by day.
The second is about the mustard seeds that are very small but grow large enough to give shelter and shade. Both of these parables are about big results from small beginnings.
These agricultural images are not simply about farming but about the reign of God. They both give us a word of caution. We should not identify size with significance. Bigger is not necessarily better. More is not necessarily merrier.
So, while we live, we should be aware of the mystery of growth. This mystery is within us as well as around us. For us, it applies particularly to our growth as persons, which is the greatest perfection of all.
Each of todays readings indicates that our growth comes from God, but we are responsible for working it out. God reveals His power with those who are, in human eyes, the weak, the insignificant and the poor. That may be us. We, walking by faith, should be channels of God’s power in a world where there are so many people who are exiles, refugees, persecuted, despised, outcast, homeless, hungry and sick.
The critical issues in whether we achieve fullness of life are receptivity in faith, openness to God’s action within us, confidence and prayer. Fr Andrew