The Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinaty Time
|The Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13:1-23)|
In our first reading (Isaiah 55:10-11), Isaiah draws on the natural world and the cycle of life to remind us that the word of God, just like the spring rains, feeds our souls and transforms us, allowing God's word to return to him, achieving the good that he intended.
Our Gospel reading (Matthew 13:1-23) is the familiar parable of the Sower. We hear Jesus preaching to the crowds and then explaining in more detail to his disciples. The question to consider is how do we respond to God's word; that is what determines the kind of soil we are.
On that day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down by the sea. Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd stood along the shore. And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying: "A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground, where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep, and when the sun rose it was scorched, and it withered for lack of roots. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it. But some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit, a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold. Whoever has ears ought to hear."
In our Epistle reading (Romans 8:18-23), St. Paul talks about our current sufferings while we wait for the glory to come. Our "groaning pains" will one day give way to the "glorious freedom". And while we wait, it is the word of God that sustains and feeds us.
There are three actors in the parable of the sower - the one who sows, the seed itself and the one who receives the seed. We already know that the seed and the one who sows it is God himself. The variable in the story is us. How we receive God's word and Eucharist is what determines the good that it will do and whether it will return to God having accomplished the good that he intended. Pray God that it does.
Click Here to read, reflect and pray on the full readings for Sunday, July 16, 2017