Spirit & Life

Complex Simplicity

Mark 4:26-34
Jesus went on to say, “The Kingdom of God is like this. A man scatters seed in his field. He sleeps at night, is up and about during the day, and all the while the seeds are sprouting and growing. Yet he does not know how it happens. The soil itself makes the plants grow and bear fruit; first the tender stalk appears, then the head, and finally the head full of grain. When the grain is ripe, the man starts cutting it with his sickle, because harvest time has come.
“What shall we say the Kingdom of God is like?” asked Jesus. “What parable shall we use to explain it?  It is like this. A man takes a mustard seed, the smallest seed in the world, and plants it in the ground. After a while it grows up and becomes the biggest of all plants. It puts out such large branches that the birds come and make their nests in its shade.”
Jesus preached his message to the people, using many other parables like these; he told them as much as they could understand. He would not speak to them without using parables, but when he was alone with his disciples, he would explain everything to them.
Reflection
Farming is a purposeful activity. A combination of watching and waiting, listening and learning, living with creation and responding in hope. It is an act of courage with responsibility. It comes with commitment to sustainability, as action today is reflected in potential growth in the future. It requires care for, and understanding of, the intricate connectedness of new beginnings, abundant living and, in dying, the compost of what has been, bringing life to what is about to begin. The simple act of planting initiates the complex intertwining cycle of the life.
Jesus does not use this analogy lightly. Pertinent to all listeners, even those whose garden experience is through public places, it brings to life our active calling. Sow faith-filled seeds, with hope and care. Not because we want to see the flourishing growth, which we may never see or know. Rather, because we believe every seed of loving kindness we sow, with humility and grace, will bring about just action and peaceful relationship as part of God’s realm, in this present moment and in the moments to come. An act of complex simplicity.

Prayer 
Great farmer,
You who plant deep in our souls the gift of renewing life,
Awaken in us the desire to flourish in our faith filled living.
Unfurl new possibilities in us as we reach out into your realm;
so that we
Love with connectedness
Support with humility 
See with understanding
Listen with intent
Think with practical resourcefulness

© Rev Anne Hewitt 09/06/2021
this reflection & prayer may be shared as long as the original writer is credited.

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