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My Word Shall NOT Return to Me Void, but Shall Do MY WILL

My Word Shall NOT Return to Me Void, but Shall Do MY WILL

THE FIFTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR A

GOSPEL; Matthew 13:1-23

Dear friends,

The four types of ground described in today's parable are descriptive of our lives and the lives of others. No one is just one kind of ground. All four are aspects of ourselves. There are times in our life when; there is no room, time, or energy for anything else. Nothing is growing or flowering. The seeds of opportunity are lost, ignored, unrecognized, or snatched away. Do you know what that's like? Have you ever lived life on the path?

Sometimes life can feel pretty rocky. Fear, envy, anger, or hard-heartedness pepper the soil of our lives. New life cannot take root. There's no depth. We live at the surface. There is work to be done. What rocks fill the soil of your life?

Other times the thorns of guilt, shame, or regret choke out the possibilities of something new. Our life is constricted, strangled by the past. We are pricked by the barbs of our own inconsistencies and contradictions. What might need to be weeded from the garden of your life?

And then there are those times when our life is fertile, open, receptive, rich in nutrients, flowering, flourishing, and fruitful. The seeds within us yield "in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty."

Jesus' description of the four grounds is not intended to shame or condemn but to awaken us. It is diagnostic. All four types of ground need attention and care whether it be plowing to a newunnamed (6) depth, clearing the land, weeding, watering, or fertilizing. I don't know what the land of your life needs but I will bet you do. And the truth is all four describe parts of ourselves. The condition of the soil does not, however, stop the sower. He does not seed only the good soil. He does not withhold seed from the thorny or rocky ground. Even the walked upon path is seeded.

Who is the sower? God? Yes. Jesus? Yes. Those are the usual answers and they certainly are not wrong. God is always sowing God's life in ours. However, I and you, can also be sowers. Whatever others and you said or did. They seeded your life because they were sowers. You were also just sowing the seeds of your life. It's not so much what you did or said but who you were. You were a sower to that person.

All our lives we are sowing seeds, and often we don't even know it. The sower sows because that's who she or he is. His or her being and doing reflect each other. We sow because we are sowers. Sowing is simply our way of being and living, the way we engage the world and relate to others. The seeds we sow reflect what is going on within us and who we are. We can only sow seeds that were first sown and cultivated within us. Jesus sows in us "the word of theThe-Sower kingdom." That word is love, peace, hope, joy, forgiveness, mercy, compassion, beauty, wisdom, presence, encouragement, perseverance, courage, gentleness, wholeness, healing, reconciliation, integrity, authenticity etc. Those are the seeds Jesus sows within us, seeds that we are to cultivate within ourselves and sow in our relationships and the world. They are the kind of things that once we experience them we cannot keep them to ourselves. They sprout and grow within us, and we seed the world.

Are we ready to be good sowers and good soils, so that we can yield a hundredfold wherever we are, with our own brokenness? Our genuine faith must always be accompanied by good works, or a love that manifests itself by its actions of love. Having received God's call to faith in Christ, we will always manifest our genuine faith by good works done in obedience to the word of God. Let us pray that we may be fruitful in our life listening to the Word, understanding it, doing His will with His grace and blessing. Let us open our hearts to receive Him and sow seeds of His love by loving one another.

Fr. Frank Kyazze Lwanga