October 31, 2023
Tuesday of the Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time
Readings for Today
Jesus said, “What is the Kingdom of God like? To what can I compare it? It is like a mustard seed that a man took and planted in the garden. When it was fully grown, it became a large bush and the birds of the sky dwelt in its branches.” Luke 13:18–19
This short parable should speak to many people far more than they realize. It should be a source of great encouragement to us all as we seek to build up the Kingdom of God through apostolic works.
The mustard seed is very small. At first, when someone holds it in their hand, they may not think much of it. But if they did plant it under ideal conditions, that seed could grow into a tree upwards of 20 feet tall.
Jesus uses this parable to teach us many lessons. One such lesson is that of our apostolic works of charity. When you think of the call of being an apostle for the Lord, spreading the Gospel to the ends of the earth, what comes to mind? Perhaps the first thought is of those who have been entrusted with a very large, public and vibrant ministry. In this case, it is easier to see the good fruit born of one’s apostolic works. But what about you? For most people, they may strive to love and serve others in every small way they can, and they fail to see the abundance of good fruit born from their efforts. When this happens, some may become discouraged and lose zeal for the spreading of the Gospel.
If this is you, then consider the mustard seed. Planting this small seed is representative of much of our apostolic endeavors. God calls us to do small acts of kindness, share our faith in subtle and even hidden ways, serve out of love even when it is unnoticed, and to do so without ceasing. Do these small acts bear fruit for the Kingdom of God? If you believe this parable of the mustard seed, then the answer must be a resounding “Yes.”
Many times in life, we will never see the full effects that our actions have on others. Our negative influence will affect them far more than we realize. And our loving acts of charity, by which we share our faith, will also affect people far more than we realize. Believing in the message of this Parable of the Mustard Seed should lead us to believe that planting those small seeds of faith, through our charity, virtues, and words, will indeed bear an abundance of good fruit, far more than we may ever know, until we enter the glories of Heaven.
Reflect, today, upon your duty to daily plant the smallest seeds of faith and love. Do not get discouraged if your efforts do not bear abundantly obvious fruit. Simply commit yourself to the planting, over and over. Take delight in sowing the seed of faith and see this as your mission. If you do this throughout your life, from Heaven you will look back and be amazed at how God powerfully brought forth His Kingdom through those seemingly insignificant acts of faith and love.
My glorious King, You desire that Your Kingdom grow far and wide through our efforts of love. Please do use me, dear Lord, to plant Your seeds of faith and charity every day. May I never tire of these apostolic endeavors and may I always take great delight in serving You and building Your Kingdom in every way I can. Jesus, I trust in You.