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Sunday, July 19, 2020

Be a mustard seed, charges Fr Ebido - ITREALMS

16th Sunday in Ordinary Time (July 19/20) 

Narration: Have you ever wondered why Jesus often spoke in parables? The simple answer is that parables are stories that can quench the thirst of the merely curious; but to the disciple who is an inquirer after the truth, it affords opportunity for digging deeper to unravel the truth behind the story.

So, Jesus uses parables to ‘veil the truth’ so that he won’t be revealing too much to the ‘unserious’ who don’t deserve to know the truth about God and his promises (he calls it, “throwing pearls before swine”). But to those who genuinely want to know the truth, he explains everything but “in secret.”

In the Gospel of today (Matt 13: 24-30), Jesus treated his audience to a festival of parables. The first is the parable of the wheat and tares (weed) where the farmer planted wheat but an enemy came in the night to plant weeds. 

The second is the parable of the mustard seed which is a very small seed, but if planted on good soil, grows into a big shrub that gives shades to birds of the air. 

The third is the parable of the leaven, which the baker put into the dough and it leavens it to make it really good to eat. 

These parables are relevant today because it describes everyone in the world.

The parable of the wheat and tares (weeds) describe two types of people in the world: good and evil people. 

Sometimes, in the presence of so much evil happening all around us, it seems as if we have only evil people in the world. But that is not true. 

Yes, we have very bad people in the world; and they are of different ranks, sizes, and color (or grades) of their evil. 

There are people who constantly plan evil all day and night. 

The Psalms are filled with an account of their wickedness and their delusion that God either doesn’t ‘see’ their evil plans or doesn’t care about those they harm (Psalm 36; 37, 12-40; 38; 62:3 among others). 

It is often difficult discerning evil people from the good, because evil people do good sometimes. But a few occasions, you may meet really evil people. 

God does not allow his workers (angels of destruction) to root out evil people from this world for a reason: he uses them to ‘prune, and perfect his elect (chosen ones), even though they neither realize this fact nor its value over time. But they will see it clearly in the world to come that there is complete harmony between God’s Mercy and his Justice. 

From our human angle, it seems evil is winning; but from God’s angle, the world is unfolding as it should according to the perfect ordering of his Justice and Mercy. 

So, do not try to envy or imitate the wicked. When each one’s cup is full, he will get out of the way and go to his reward (punishment). 

As darkness can never conquer light, the battle between good and evil is already won in favor of the good (light). It is only time that will reveal it. That is what the cross represents – the worst of evil has been overcome on Easter Sunday. 

So, resolve to be either a leaven for bringing about a degree of change for the better in the world around you or a mustard tree whose seeds not only heals the wounds of life but also its “branches” provides shade for those ‘beaten by the rain,’ or those still ‘searching for direction’ to their homeland.

In other words, be that true disciple who ‘intentionally’ decides to be a ‘force for good’ in the world.

PRAYER: Eternal father, you have sown me in the soil of this world, may your grace water the garden of my soul so that I produce not just good wheat, but be a leaven in the midst of my brothers/sisters. Grant me the grace of a holy and generous heart. Amen
🙏🏽©️Fr Augustine Ebido, O.P.

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