30TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
It is like a mustard seed that a man took and planted in the garden.
“Grow the kingdom of God in just fifteen minutes a day!”
Even though that headline sounds like it belongs in a grocery-store tabloid magazine, it captures the point behind the parables in today’s Gospel (Luke 13:18-21).
Jesus uses these two parables to illustrate the miraculous potential for growth in the kingdom of God. They speak about the power and grace of God, especially his ability to do something far beyond what we would expect with even the smallest of seeds or the tiniest bit of yeast.
The same is true for us. Even with our smallest effort, God can do amazing things. Think about how powerful just fifteen minutes of prayer a day can be. That’s only 1 percent of a twenty-four-hour day, but it’s amazing what can happen in those few short minutes. You can touch the very presence of God. Guilt over past sins can be wiped away as you encounter his mercy. Your heart can soften with love for the people around you. You can even hear the Spirit speaking to you and opening the mysteries of Scripture to your heart! Now consider the effect all of this can have on your entire day: the peace, the guidance, the hope, the confidence.
Or from another angle, think about the impact that a one-hour lunch with a friend can make. During that time, you share a short story about something you learned in your prayer the day before. Or perhaps you mention some blessing God has given you. But that little story sits in your friend’s memory like a seed. It takes root and grows. And perhaps, over time, your friend begins to pray, to come back to Mass, or to ask you more questions. All from a simple lunch date!
God can take any mustard seed-sized effort that you put into growing your faith and turn it into something surprisingly large and beautiful. Even just fifteen minutes a day can make a huge difference!
“Lord, thank you for promising to bring so much growth into my life and the lives of the people around me!”