July 21, 2022
Thursday of the Sixteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Readings for Today
Saint Lawrence of Brindisi, Priest and Doctor—Optional Memorial
The disciples approached Jesus and said, “Why do you speak to the crowd in parables?” He said to them in reply, “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted. To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away.” Matthew 13:10-12
Does that seem fair? At first read, it may not. Why would Jesus promise more to those who have more, and less to those who have not? This goes to the heart of the mystery of grace, and the mystery of the Kingdom of Heaven!
First of all, we see that Jesus spoke in parables to the crowds but spoke clearly and directly to His disciples. Jesus explains that this is “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted.” So, for that reason, Jesus speaks in veiled speech when speaking to the vast crowds.
To speak plainly here, what Jesus is saying is that some people are simply more open to the truth than others. When someone is not open, Jesus is limited and, thus, He must speak in parables. One goal of a parable is to get someone thinking. It’s a way of drawing them in so that they can engage their minds with the Word that was spoken.
When someone is open to the Truth, such as the disciples, Jesus is able to lift the veil and speak clearly, deeply and beautifully about the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven. This must be our goal. We must seek to be those who “get it.” We must seek to understand all Jesus speaks and believe it wholeheartedly. In fact, once we do begin to believe and, subsequently, live what we come to believe, we will begin a wonderful journey of faith and understanding that we never knew existed before.
This is what Jesus means when He says, “to anyone who has, more will be given.” The life of grace is such that, once we begin to accept all that is true and then allow it to transform our lives, we will be given exponentially more than we ever imagined. And, on the flip side, when we refuse to listen and understand, even the little faith and understanding we have will slowly slip away into confusion.
Reflect, today, on how open you are to the Word of God and all that God wants to say to you. Seek to listen and understand. If you do this, you will discover that there is a glorious life of grace just waiting to be lavished upon you in full force.
Lord of all grace, I do want to know You. I do want to seek You and to discover all that You have to say. Help me to turn to You in all things and to grow continually deeper in the life of faith. Jesus, I trust in You.
Saint of the Day: Saint Lawrence of Brindisi
Featured Image: Jesus Discourses with His Disciples, James Tissot