Sisters of St. Francis of the Holy Cross in Green Bay, WI
Reflection for June 17, 2012

Reflection for June 17, 2012

Whether a 'tomato' or a 'carrot,' God's grace is for all

by Associate Bert Le Brick

In today's readings Jesus and Ezekiel help us understand the greatness of God by using images of a tree and a plant.  In Ezekiel, the Lord God says, "I too will plant a tender shoot on a high and lofty mountain which will become a majestic cedar."  Ezekiel describes the greatness of God's people as being like this majestic cedar.  Then in Mark's Gospel, Jesus shares a parable with the crowds: "The kingdom of God is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth ... then springs up to become a large plant."   I think Jesus is saying we can do small and simple acts without drawing attention to them just like the simple mustard plant.  Our acts need not be showy or majestic as the cedar.

These readings remind me of my planting tomato and carrot seeds in the house in April.  As these seeds are turning into plants they are increasing in height.  The tomato is becoming strong and sturdy but the carrot is thin and delicate.  This is much like the power of God.  God's power is not limited to the strong and sturdy, as the tomato plant which will produce showy beautiful red fruit, but God's power and grace will also be there for the weak and humble, like my thin and delicate carrot plants whose "fruit" will be in the ground where it will not be seen until unearthed, but will be just as tasty and beautiful as the wonderful red tomato.  So, too, can be our acts of kindness to strangers; proudly sharing a testimony for a large crowd or simply giving food and clothing for the hungry and homeless. These can plant seeds of God's love in another person's heart.

How do I show my simple acts of kindness?

Prayer: The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower.  All who come to Him will live forever.

Thanks, Bert. What a homey way to look at this Gospel! I'll look at our garden differently when I get home.

Thanks , Bert, for the practical thoughts .

Thanks, Bert, for sharing your garden experience and relating it to the readings today. There's a place for everything...everyone in God's garden.

Whether for a plant or a person, the nurturing of gifts can be quite hidden but the fruit lovely nonetheless. I think of my father, a very quiet man, as he provided for us and contributed to the community. I appreciate your insights into the Scriptures, Bert.


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