Pastor’s Word

Our Gospel from Mark for yesterday begins with the parable of a planter who sows seed, and then proceeds to rise and sleep with night and day, and the seed grows, and the planter doesn’t even know how. Jesus portrays a world where the rhythm of action and rest is a part of life, and where the Spirit is intimately involved in all that is. We do our part, then rest and watch God at work. And God surprises us, calling the most unlikely people to do great things, bringing abundant life from the tiniest seed.
What a gift it is to know that, no matter how small our part may seem, it is an essential part of the kin-dom of God. And what a relief it can be for us, when we are weary, to know that part of what we are called to is a sacred nap! We are in community for a reason, so that all of us together, with God’s creative energy abounding, can accomplish amazing things.
Archbishop Oscar Romero affirmed this in a poem that I offer to you for reflection. What “seed” are you called to sow?” Where do see God at work in your life and the world around you? And where are you called to rest, in a sacred nap?
It helps, now and then, to step back and take a long view.
The Kingdom is not only beyond our efforts,
it is even beyond our vision.
We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction
of the magnificent enterprise that is God’s work.
Nothing we do is complete,
which is a way of saying that the Kingdom always lies beyond us.
No statement says all that could be said.
No prayer fully expresses our faith.
No confession brings perfection.
No pastoral visit brings wholeness.
No program accomplishes the Church’s mission.
No set of goals and objectives includes everything.
This is what we are about.
We plant the seeds that one day will grow.
We water seeds already planted,
knowing that they hold future promise.
We lay foundations that will need further development.
We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities.
We cannot do everything,
and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that.
This enables us to do something,
and to do it very well.
It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way,
an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest.
We may never see the end results,
but that is the difference between the master builder and the worker.
We are workers, not master builders;
ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future that is not our own.