Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time • Year B

Christopher J. Drennen, O.S.A.
Malvern Preparatory School
Malvern, Pennsylvania

Ez 17:22-24
Ps 92:2-3, 13-14, 15-16
2 Cor 5:6-10
Mk 4:26-34

Sometimes we fail to appreciate the glory that God has in store for us. We can become overwhelmed with the daily struggles of our lives and be stunned at the way of the world with all its problems. But the Scriptures this week remind us that great things can happen when we let go and let God’s power transform us.

There are three images in the scripture that remind us that we are in God hands when we place ourselves in the care of God. The small shoot of the cedar tree, the promise of salvation in 2 Corinthians, and the parable of the mustard seed. Each of these thoughts show us that a small little thing can become the greatest.

The tender shoot of the cedar tree is cut off and transplanted on the highest mountain in Israel and becomes a majestic cedar and bears much fruit. We are often called to change our lives in small and not so small ways. Sometimes it takes pruning and sacrifice to allow God to renew and refresh us as majestic creatures. If we refuse to change and be transplanted we will never know how great God can recreate us. Let God cut off a tender shoot so that great things can come into our lives.

The Gospel message of the mustard seed parable reminds us that we might be small and insignificant in the world’s eye, but God has plans for us to grow into the largest of plants where great gifts can be nourished. If we dare to let go and let God use us, we can become our best selves. We can become more than we ever dreamed possible. It starts with small things and grows into the gift that God has created us to become.

How do we start to make the needed changes that allow God to transform us? St. Paul reminds us to be courageous. Even surrounded by a world of hate and war, we can remain faithful if we “walk by faith, not by sight.” We do not know where God is leading us, but we trust by faith that he will never abandon us and always be our shepherd. We can’t see the details of the future but we can keep close to God when we trust in the promise of eternal life. The lack of human sight does not mean we do not have spiritual sight, or faith itself. Faith is the fuel when we do not have human sight.

We recently completed the high point of our church year: Easter. Christ gave up everything and died for us so that we can see the power of the Resurrection and new life. Tomorrow offers us hope. Today may be challenging but the future is bright. Hang in there. Walk by faith and we will have the spiritual power to walk with the light, the Light of Christ.