Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Like many Americans of my age, I enjoy a little gardening. The scenario in Mark 4:26 and following makes some sense to me. I prepare the space and plant some things. The seeds don’t seem like much of anything. And, especially if it’s a little cold, we go through some time wondering if anything will come of it. However, there’s really not much to be done about it. We sleep, rise, work, rest, repeat. Some days or even weeks later, God provides an increase. We care for the garden as well as we reasonably can. Yet, ultimately we are unable to bring life where the conditions won’t sustain it.
Jesus describes the Kingdom of Heaven this way. We plant God’s Word in our hearts, in the lives of those around us, anywhere we can. The world is the field. We pray and hope for the best. By His mercy and grace, God takes His Word and makes it grow. We don’t know how. Our labor is used by God but it is according to His will, not ours. Our fear, our anxiety, our sleepless nights - these make no increase. Only God brings the increase. We can rest in faith, knowing that God will do His will, and that His will is good. May He bring a great increase.
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