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Faith Daily | 27 January 2023

PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p530

O God,

the strength of all those who put their trust in you:

mercifully accept our prayers,

and because through the weakness of our mortal nature

we can do nothing good without you,

grant us the help of your grace,

that in keeping your commandments

we may please you both in will and deed;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.


GOSPEL for the Day: Mark 4: 26-34

26He also said, “The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, 27and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how. 28The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. 29But when the grain is ripe, at once he goes in with his sickle, because the harvest has come.”

30He also said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? 31It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; 32yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”

33With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; 34he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.


Much thought has been given to exactly what Jesus meant by ‘The Kingdom of God’ and many words have been written about it.

The question raised for me by the first section of today’s reading, v.26-29, is - When? when will the Kingdom of God come to this full fruition? Do we have to wait till the Second Coming, or will it be present anytime we, like seeds, are ‘scattered on good ground’ and our goodness is nurtured surely like good grain in good ground and so we are good people? If this idea is true, I don’t think it’s a matter of luck to have good potential - I think we have to search within ourselves for our good seeds and nurture them as steadfastly as nature can nurture a crop of grain. And our good ground is often others who encourage us to find the good within us so we ‘sprout’ and grow to our fullness. And of course as we learn in Matthew 3:2 and 4:17, the Kingdom of God is ‘at hand’ or ‘has come near’ in Jesus - so being grounded in him will be our best way of bringing the Kingdom to fruition. I have come to believe, that does mean now - whenever we follow the way of Jesus.

And the second section about the mustard seed shows just how mightily and usefully the tiniest beginning can come to amazing fruition, being splendid to see, and serving any who come.

(As one of the world’s ‘shorties’ I really liked the following I saw this week on a T-shirt:-

‘God only lets things grow until they’re perfect. Some of us didn’t take as long as others’)

Both these parables of Jesus say to me that any of us, including those who might feel small and insignificant, can, if we let ourselves grow, accepting the ‘natural’ help we experience, from church, family, community, and our relationship with Jesus - bring in a part of God’s Kingdom here and now.


adapted from “Much out of little”. by Bruce D. Prewer

Lord of the mustard seed,

you can make much out of little.

Take over our small minds

and the little parcel

of our abilities and skills,

and use them for the purposes

of your Kingdom of love.


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