We can be "good soil" for the sowing of God's word
Sunday Homily for July 13, 2008
Fifteenth Sunday iOrdinary Time
By Father Cusick
Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In today's gospel according to St. Matthew, chapter thirteen, verses one to twenty-three, our Lord recommends that we study and understand our faith, that we persevere in the times we've lost enthusiasm and that we practice detachment from the things of this world in preference to the gospel.
Whenever we read the scriptures, and in particular the gospels, we should be attentive to the practical direction they have for us. The gospels are unlike any other literature in the history of the world. They are unique because in them the Word of God, Jesus Christ Himself, speaks to us and instructs us. Because He knows each of us intimately, His love for us is the perfect answer to our needs. But we will not grow in the good and joyful life of Christ if the gospel can find no place in us.
When the scriptures are proclaimed in the liturgy we can be "good soil" for the sowing of God's word if we put aside distractions and recognize that it is the most important moment of the week; the one in which the living God speaks to each of us in a perfect way. But if we are rocky ground, with little depth, or a patch of thorns, with little or no time or attention, the Word will not take root.
The Catechism teaches: "Jesus' invitation to enter his kingdom comes in the form of parables, a characteristic feature of his teaching. Through his parables he invites people to the feast of the kingdom, but he also asks for a radical choice: to gain the kingdom, one must give everything. Words are not enough; deeds are required.
The parables are like mirrors for man: will he be hard soil or good earth for the word? What use has he made of the talents he has received? Jesus and the presence of the kingdom in this world are secretly at the heart of the parables. One must enter the kingdom, that is, become a disciple of Christ, in order to 'know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven.' For those who stay 'outside,' everything remains enigmatic." (CCC 546)
Just like the tantalizing waters of a pool in hot weather, you will never know the joy and refreshment of Christ unless you jump into the life of His Church with both feet and commit yourself to the Truth.
- Fr. Cusick