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Daily Prayer - 2013-02-01

Presence

My soul longs for your presence, Lord.
When I turn my thoughts to You,
I find peace and contentment.

Freedom

It is so easy to get caught up
with the trappings of wealth in this life.
Grant, O Lord, that I may be free
from greed and selfishness.
Remind me that the best things in life are free.
Love, laughter, caring and sharing.

Consciousness

Life is busy Lord
Often my best intentions are left undone.
But I know that you are with me in all I say and do,
And in everyone I meet with daily.

The Word of God

Mark 4:26-34

Jesus said to the crowd, "The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how. The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. But when the grain is ripe, at once he goes in with his sickle, because the harvest has come." He also said, "With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade." With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • There will always be something hidden and mysterious about the kingdom of God. At best we get occasional hints as to what it may be or where it can be found. The first parable today reminds us that, while we live our ordinary day-to-day lives, the kingdom continues to grow – we do not know how! It is not we who bring it about but some mysterious power beyond our understanding. This is a consoling teaching for Christian communities under persecution, or who live in a hostile secular environment, or whose numbers are diminishing.
  • Equally consoling is the second parable which also deals with growth. The smallness of the mustard seed does not prevent its becoming “the greatest of all shrubs” (an exaggeration – but this is not a lesson in botany!). Christians are frequently tempted to want to be the most numerous, most powerful, most influential religion in the world. Even if such hopes were fulfilled, this would not guarantee that the kingdom of God had come. As Christians we do better to see ourselves as the mustard seed – small, childlike, humble, and trusting. As Jesus says elsewhere: “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom” (Luke 12:32).

Conversation

“Stay and watch with me.”
Your words, Lord, to the disciples
before your suffering and death.
I know, Lord, You will stay and watch over me
all the days of my life.

Conclusion

I thank God for these few moments we have spent alone together and for any insights I may have been given concerning the text.

Amen

If you appreciated the daily prayer or have any suggestions or insights we will be glad to hear from you.