COMMENTARIES FROM THE HEART (By Fr. Anthony Agnes)
15th Sunday of Ordinary Time, Year A (16.07.2023)
First Reading: Isaiah 55:10-11
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 64(65):10-14
Second Reading: Romans 8:18-23
Gospel: Matthew 13:1-23
Theme: “My Percentage with God”
“And the one who received the seed in rich soil is the man who hears the word and understands it; he is the one who yields a harvest and produces now a hundredfold, now sixty, now thirty.’”
How beautiful! Even with the fertile soil there are options, a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. This is true of life; with God there are options. It shows the generosity of God who treats us differently; according to our capacities and capabilities. He does not expect the same yield or the same amount of fruits from everyone. For God, you are unique, I am unique. That is why on the day of Judgment God will not ask you, why were you not as a holy as Mother Theresa or St. Padre Pio? No, he will ask you why were you not as holy as yourself. Before God, there are no grades of holiness. What matters is for us to try our best to be holy as we can and he will supply the rest.
Unfortunately, the reality is that sometimes we tend to compare ourselves with others. Why is my family not like that other family? Why is my job not like that man’s job? Why is my husband or wife not like that man or woman? It is not necessary. You don’t have to be like that parishioner who sings in the choir or reads at church. God expects a hundredfold from one person, another a seventyfold and yet another a thirtyfold. Whatever he gives us let us accept it and produce fruits for him.
We are told the other soils did not bear fruit due to challenges and obstructions. This parable is a reminder that sometimes we also can find ourselves in these other soils that did not produce fruits. It is a challenge of the Christian life. No one remains in one soil forever because we are all weak and we keep moving from one soil to another but in the end we must end up in the good soil.
How do we move into the good soil, the soil that bears fruits? Let us try these three little spiritual exercises: daily reading of the Scriptures i.e. the Bible, daily meditation on the Word of God i.e. spending some time in the day to reflect on what God is telling us, and lastly, making a daily resolution on what we want to do in the day as our response to the Word of God. Though simple and easy exercises, when we make them our daily practice we will gradually transform and transport into the good soil that yields a harvest and produces a hundred, a sixty, or a thirtyfold.
Praise be Jesus Christ!
My Prayer: Almighty Father, guide me to know my capacities, so that with your grace I will bring you a harvest of great joy. In Jesus name. Amen!
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