Sowing in Time, Sowing for Eternity
The Parable of the Developing Seed has three phases. In the first phase the seed is sown. The second phase is one of growth. The third and final phase is the action of harvesting.
Phase one is the arrival of God’s Kingdom. Jesus announced it as arriving with Him. It is the arrival of the Word of God in history, sown in the world and actually took flesh in Jesus.
During the second phase between the seed being sown and the time of harvesting, the seed has the power within it to grow and develop. However, the power of the seed, that is the Word of God planted within us, needs our co-operation to sprout and grow as the mustard seed did. God’s grace and mercy can only grow within us if we are open to His truth and the teachings of His Son.
The parable of the small mustard which grows into a large shrub, assures listeners that from small beginnings of sanctifying grace received in baptism one has the potential for considerable growth in goodness and holiness.
The Divine Seed of the Kingdom of God has been planted in us at our baptism. Let us respond to Jesus and co-operate with His grace.
This brings us to the third phase. Harvesting grain in the ancient world was understood to be an image of God’s final judgment. The mustard seed challenges us to do our best to grow in goodness and holiness before the time of the final harvest. We will all get what we deserve at the harvest time, so let us live our lives and make our choices based on our faith in Jesus and His promises. By doing so and bearing good fruit, our harvest will be pleasing to our Lord and we will share in the joy of the Harvest Master!