Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Today’s text

Matthew 13:24-30

He put another parable before them, 'The kingdom of Heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field. While everybody was asleep his enemy came, sowed darnel all among the wheat, and made off. When the new wheat sprouted and ripened, then the darnel appeared as well. The owner's laborers went to him and said, "Sir, was it not good seed that you sowed in your field? If so, where does the darnel come from?" He said to them, "Some enemy has done this." And the laborers said, "Do you want us to go and weed it out?" But he said, "No, because when you weed out the darnel you might pull up the wheat with it. Let them both grow till the harvest; and at harvest time I shall say to the reapers: First collect the darnel and tie it in bundles to be burnt, then gather the wheat into my barn." '
What today am I to nurture? What goodness is here that I might seek to grow?

The questions are painful and pressing when one considers a loved one in pain, an adolescent living on the edge of trouble, a beloved soul who is hurting themselves--or the bottomless needs of the world’s poor strafed by evils of indifference, addiction, abuse or oppression.

It is so tempting to be angry at evil, to rail and condemn people, systems and forces that maim and deface human life. Evil fascinates the soul. It seduces us to imagine that it is more powerful than it is, and that we can and should try to reach into others lives--or our own--and pluck out such evil influences we see or feel are there.

But the life of faith, it appears, is not about fascination with evil and its destruction, whether in our souls, those of others or the systems of the world, although we must seek to change and improve what we can.

Real change, truest growth comes not from the elimination of life’s weeds but in caring for the wheat, trusting the seed of God implanted in one’s soul and in the soil of the world.

Even in the poorest of places, in the most troubled adolescents and yes, amid the brambles of our own souls, seeds of the kingdom, the tender plant of God’s precious life grows.

Fixing our eyes on the beauty of this growth, on the health that exists amid the brokenness, on the goodness that is present even amid its opposite, we see the beauty of God, the strength of seeds of life, the wonder of the kingdom.

Tend to this, and divine beauty uproots our fixation with what is wrong with life, peace replaces anxiety and hope pushes fresh stems through sadness.

Pr. David L. Miller

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