Daily Reflection – 1/28/2022
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.” He said, “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.( Mark 4:26-34)
All of us know the parable of the mustard seed. The tiny mustard seed literally grew to be a tree which attracted numerous birds because they loved the little black mustard seed it produced.
God’s kingdom works in a similar fashion. It starts from the smallest beginnings in the hearts of men and women who are receptive to God’s word. And it works unseen and causes a transformation from within. Just as a seed has no power to change itself until it is planted in the ground, so we cannot change our lives to be like God until God gives us the power of his Holy Spirit.
The growing seed in the parable is meant to represent God’s action in our lives. Independent of us, God is moving our lives to something good. Despite our doubts, frustrations, and failures, God is working in silent and secret ways to keep growth alive, to move us forward. Today’s parable reminds us that the good things in our life are not all of our own doing. Reconciliation, healing, and forward movement are often the result of God working behind the scenes. We do this and that, and we should. But it is when God acts that things become successful.
This is why we should always be ready. In the parable when the grain ripens the farmer wields the sickle at once because the harvest has come. We must be ready to act at once when the right time arrives.
We may have been trying to make peace with a family member or a friend over and over again without success. But then something changes and God opens a door. We must be ready at once to walk through it. We may be stuck in our grief for months or years with no energy to move forward. But then there is a phone call and an invitation, and we hear God’s voice. We should be ready at once to say yes. We might have tried to solve a problem from every angle without success. And then a new opportunity emerges, and we know that it is God’s gift. We must be ready at once to accept it.
As a society, we have grown accustomed to the big event, the big news, even the miracle. Sure, that is how it happens sometimes. But most of the time, it’s through the small actions of our lives that things change. In fact, we change as a result of them. We change because through our constancy of doing the right things, speaking the kind words, gently nudging a friend toward a better decision for all, we find it easier and easier to speak in the language of Christ.
There is the point. When we allow ourselves to be guided not by the world’s standards but by His standards, we create a place in our minds and hearts, where we measure ourselves as citizens of His kingdom. That is when the seed is growing. That is when His kingdom is growing.
Every day, in any small way, just keep on moving forward in His image. Instead of hoping to be invited to the kingdom, help grow the kingdom.
Prayer of The Day
“Lord Jesus, fill me with your Holy Spirit and transform me into the Christ-like holiness you desire. Increase my zeal for your kingdom and instill in me a holy desire to live for your greater glory.”
Are you ready to let God change you by his life-giving Word and Spirit? The kingdom of God produces a transformation in those who receive the new life which Jesus Christ offers. When we yield to the Lord Jesus and allow his word to take root in us, our lives are transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit who dwells within us. Paul the Apostle says, “we have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent power belongs to God and not to us” (2 Corinthians 4:7). Do you believe in the transforming power of the Holy Spirit?