July 16, 2017

15th Sun., Ordinary Time

July 16, 2017:  Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Find ten connections with today?
Legend below

For Psalm 65
Pope Francis Angelus
The sower is Jesus, but the parable speaks of the soil so concerns us.  Jesus spiritually x-rays our heart, the ground the Word falls on.  Our heart is like the soil:  it can be good when the Word bears fruit, but it can be hard and waterproof.  Between these forms of soil, there are two types of land:  stony ground where the seed can't take root representing superficial hearts who welcome the Lord, want to pray, love, and testify, but don't persevere, and thorny ground, full of rocks (vices) that suffocate the good plants, representing the world seduced by wealth and greed.  With the Lord’s help, we can reclaim the land through confession and prayer that remove the stones and thorns and purify our hearts.
Wordle: Readings 7-13-14
  • Is 55:10-11  Just as rain and snow don't return till they make earth fruitful, so too my word:  it won't return till it does my will.
  • Ps 65:10-14  "The seed that falls on good ground will yield a fruitful harvest."  You watered, prepared, and enriched the land, bringing a rich harvest.  Meadows, fields, and valleys rejoice.
  • Rom 8:18-23  Today's sufferings are nothing compared with future glory.  Creation, groaning in labor pains, eagerly awaits the freedom of God's children; we also groan inwardly awaiting redemption.
  • Mt 13:1-23  “As a sower sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds ate it.  Some fell on rocky ground and sprang up but then withered.  Some fell among thorns and was choked.  But some fell on rich soil and produced abundant fruit.” / “Why do you speak in parables?” / “Knowledge of the kingdom has been given to you but not them.  Those who have will be given more, but from those who lack, the little they have will be taken; they hear but don't understand—but blessed are you who hear.  The seeds on the path are those who hear the word without understanding; the evil one steals what was sown.  The seeds on rocky ground are those who welcome the word but don't have roots and so fall away once trials come.  The seeds among thorns are those who hear the word, but anxiety and lure of riches choke it.  But the seeds on rich soil are those who hear and understand the word, then bear fruit.”
      Sower parable explained (12th century)
    • Creighton:  As the sower parable is traditionally interpreted, God is the sower and our hearts are the ground.  But you can also visualize yourself as the sower wanting to spread the seeds of the gospel.  We can share the seeds of faith by how we live our lives.  Do we speak kindly about people?  Do we encourage folks who need encouragement?  Do we reach out to those in need, sharing our time and talents with them?  What thoughts, words, and actions of ours demonstrate our desire to live the gospel?  Are the seeds God is sowing at your feet falling on fertile soil?  God’s presence and seeds are in every step we take.
    • One Bread, One Body:  "Sow the word constantly":  The Spirit uses our sowing of God's word to touch others.  Sowers don't see what's under the soil.  If we go only by what we see, we might decide not to plant a seed and so miss a fruitful harvest.  God spreads seed and water everywhere, never stops sowing, and always gets results; the Lord doesn't go by what's on the surface.
      Landscape with parable of the sower/ Brueghel
    • Passionist:  The parables of God's kingdom are the high point of Matthew.  Parables end with a cryptic statement that summons you to hear and act on God's word.  This Parable of the Soil is the only one Jesus interprets.  The sower sows seeds before they can be harvested.  some fall on the path, some on rocky ground, and some on rich soil.  The emphasis is on the soil, not the sower or seeds.  Jesus is preaching to all, not just the apostles:  time is short, God's kingdom is at hand; listen!  Despite bad weather or other failures, the soil succeeds and the harvest grows.  God's reign is inevitable.  We can divert the power of the Word, but as stewards of life, we should nourish and care for the soil.  Parables give us insight to embrace God's kingdom....
      The Sower
    • DailyScripture.net:  "Why do you speak in parables?"  In parables Jesus sketched pictures that speak more clearly than words, though he knew some who heard them had closed hearts and so refused to understand.  How do I listen to God's word?  Prejudiced with a shut mind and so unteachable and blind?  Shallow without thinking it through and so ready to wander away?  As one among many interests, without focus, and so too preoccupied?  Or open-minded, eager to learn and submit, and so receiving understanding and strength?
    Dress legend
    • 'Wheat' pin:  Rain and snow give seed to the sower and bread to the eater (1st reading); you prepared the grain; the valleys are blanketed with grain (psalm)
    • 'Dove' pin:  We who have the firstfruits of the Spirit groan as we await redemption (2nd reading)
    • 'Boat' tie bar:  Jesus got into a boat, sat, and spoke (gospel)
    • 'Birds' tie:  Birds ate the seed that fell on the path (gospel)
    • 'Rock' tie pin:  Some seed fell on rocky ground (gospel)
    • 'Roses' pin:  Some seed fell among thorns (gospel)
    • 'Eyeball' pin:  Some have closed their eyes, lest they see, understand, and be converted and healed; blessed your eyes because they see (gospel)
    • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

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