Seeds and Weeds
Mark 4:2-9 Parable of the Seeds (aka Parable of the Sower)
"...The story implies that we, theoretically the faithful finishing the story with Jesus, are the seeds that fall in good soil, have no troubles, and yield abundant grain. But that doesn’t exactly fit, either. We fall short. We fail to be fruitful. We have troubles.
Jesus says of the seeds among weeds, “As for what was sown among thorns or weeds, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the lure of wealth choke the word, and it yields nothing.” I believe that we are seeds among weeds, dealing with the cares of the world and the lure of wealth and still we are yielding rich physical, emotional and spiritual nourishment on our best days. We do this in the midst of flooded soil, scorching sun, choking weeds, biting thorns, and pesky critters.
As strong plants amidst weeds, we have a heartier story to tell than the simplistic way we could read this parable. What is a weed? A plant we don’t want. But weeds to one person might be a salad of lamb’s quarter and dandelion greens to another. We can’t see the big picture, let alone the future, we don’t know what God’s plan for thistles or buckhorn might be.
In this story we’re seeds among weeds – we grow into plants and we’re surrounded by other people who on some days seem like healthy, fruitful plants, and other days seem rather weedy. We should trust that we seem like weeds to other people too, when we’re impatient on the phone with customer service or avoid eye contact with the person asking for spare change or when we yell at our spouse or kids or dog cause we’re having a bad day.
The weeds we live with aren’t always people, they can be the traumas and temptations and distractions and disappointments of our lives.
Who would you be without the weeds of your life? Without the heartbreaks and injustices and illnesses and assaults, who would you be? Would you have grown as tall, stretching beyond these weeds to soak up the sun’s gifts? Would you have grown as strong, keeping yourself upright despite invaders and intruders leaning into you? Would your skin have grown as thick, protecting yourself from attack? Would you have become so colorful, drawing bees and butterflies to your flowers to pollinate you? If you had grown up a potted plant, sheltered from wind and beetles, nourished with consistent water and specialized soil, shined on by sunlight and grow lights, protected from competitive weeds or hungry rabbits, how satisfying would your yield be to you or those around you?..."
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