Daily Reflection – July 23, 2016
Saturday 23 July 2016
First Reading: Jeremiah 7:1-11
How lovely is your dwelling-place, Lord, mighty God!
Psalm 83(84):3-6, 8, 11
Gospel Reading: Matthew 13:24-30
Today’s Saint: St Bridget of Sweden
Jesus proposed a parable to the crowds.
“The Kingdom of heaven may be likened to a man
who sowed good seed in his field.
While everyone was asleep his enemy came
and sowed weeds all through the wheat, and then went off.
When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well.
The slaves of the householder came to him and said,
‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field?
Where have the weeds come from?’
He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’
His slaves said to him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’
He replied, ‘No, if you pull up the weeds
you might uproot the wheat along with them.
Let them grow together until harvest;
then at harvest time I will say to the harvesters,
“First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles for burning;
but gather the wheat into my barn.”’”
Let them grow together until harvest. (Matthew 13:30)
Most of us have begged the Lord, at some point or another, to heal or change some aspect of our lives. We need him to deliver us from a persistent sin pattern, to heal a weakness that leaves us vulnerable to temptation, or even to change our character because we think the one we have is so flawed. “Just take it away, Lord,” we implore, only to find ourselves discouraged because, well, it’s still there.
Thank God for today’s parable of the wheat and the weeds! It tells us that God’s patience extends even to the “weeds” in our lives. He never deals with everything at once. He patiently and gently works on one thing, then another, and another, continually refining us. He knows what to leave for now lest rooting it out might damage some other area in our lives. It’s not that he accepts whatever obstacles to holiness exist in us. He’s just very careful in how he proceeds.
Maybe you get upset with family members or co-workers too often. Angry words slip out, causing resentment. You’ve repented and asked God to heal you, so why does it still happen? It’s possible that anger or bitterness was sown into you in the past, and you need Jesus’ healing touch. Or maybe you find it hard to engage with people in large groups, then feel bad because you don’t have any friends in that group. Seeds of rejection might have taken hold and need to be rooted out.
Of course, we need to be on guard against sin and temptation. We absolutely must take responsibility for the times we fall again into a pattern of sin. But we don’t have to worry about scouring our lives to find weeds; God will point them out in his own time and according to his wisdom.
So when you become aware of a “weed” in you, trust that God is already working on it. And be patient with yourself while he does. He knows what he’s doing! Above all, remember this: Jesus loves you despite whatever weeds remain in your heart. He sees so much good in you, and that always brings a smile to his face.
“Father, you have sown good seed in me. I trust you as you patiently bring in the harvest of my life.”