Saturday 27th February 2021
'The Mustard Seed of faith!'
Mark 4: 30-34
The parable of the mustard seed
Again he (Jesus) said, ‘What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth. Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.’
With many similar parables Jesus spoke the word to them, as much as they could understand. He did not say anything to them without using a parable. But when he was alone with his own disciples, he explained everything.
Mustard seeds come in a variety of different colours and are derived from three different plants. The most expensive are the black mustard seeds, which are notoriously difficult to harvest, and a staple ingredient in Indian cuisine. Perhaps the most common use of Mustard Seeds in Scotland are the white ones, often added to bread or used in baking to add texture or decoration.
In the parable of the mustard seed, Jesus uses the image of a tiny seed to teach about God’s Kingdom. As the plant can grow between eight and twelve feet high from a tiny seed, so a small amount of faith can result in great things!
When the seed of the Gospel is planted in our hearts, it begins a process of spiritual growth and inward transformation. Without trying to mix too many metaphors our lives begin to reflect the fruit of the Holy Spirit along with a shift in our personal priorities. As faith grows within us, we become involved in God’s work and catalyst for the Kingdom! How this works out is different for each of us. God may open new doors of opportunity and service, possibly something we have never expected or thought about. But all it takes is a little seed planted in a person’s heart.
Steer the ship of my life, good Lord,
to your quiet harbour,
where I can be safe from the storms of sin and conflict.
Show me the course I should take.
Renew in me the gift of discernment,
so that I can always see the right direction in which I should go.
And give me the strength and the courage to choose the right course,
even when the sea is rough and the waves are high,
knowing that through enduring hardship and danger,
in your name, we shall find comfort and peace.
(Attributed to St. Basil of Caesarea)
May Christ support us all the day long,
till the shadows lengthen,
and the evening comes,
and the busy world is hushed,
and the fever of life is over
and our work is done.
Then in his mercy
may he give us a safe lodging,
and holy rest
and peace at the last.
May God the Father,
who does not despise the broken spirit,
give to you a contrite heart.
who bore our sins in his body on the tree,
heal you by his wounds.
May the Holy Spirit,
who leads us into all truth,
speak to you words of pardon and peace.
And the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among you and remain with you always.