Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time; Sunday, June 14, 2015

The season known as Ordinary Time has returned; the vesture green.  It’s the longest of liturgical seasons, and I find that fitting since much of life is ordinary.  So, this season challenges us to discover God within the ordinary and every day.

That challenge is sensed in Jesus’ words this 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time; in the gospel passage from Mark (4: 26-34). Jesus likens the Kingdom of God to a mustard seed; the smallest of seeds.  God’s mystery emerges and brushes up against our lives through what is small.  I’m reminded of words by a nun—Sister Blanche I believe—in the play “Dialogue of the Carmelites” who said that ‘a drop of water bears the signature of God’.

Some have called this teaching of Jesus the “mustard seed conspiracy”.  Easily we miss the timeless nature of the Kingdom of God emerging within our ordinary, everyday lives because we are too distracted and not really here in the present moment: where life happens and God conspires with us.

Last week, I had several baptisms during the liturgies.  Something happened during one of them that caught my eye.  During the Rite and before I baptized Analeigh, her young brother Wyatt, standing nearby, unselfconsciously started kissing her feet.  I was quite moved by his gesture.  Is not that what is happening in those mysterious waters:  God meeting us and with love tenderly kissing us into the welcoming nature of his presence fleshed out in Christ?    That small gesture spoke volumes.  God spoke to me through a small child and touched my heart in a way that made me smile.

I was moved again while reading coverage of Beau Biden’s funeral Mass and his brother’s eulogy.  Most of us know that, over forty years earlier, Beau and his younger brother Hunter survived a tragic car accident in which their mother and a young sister were killed.  Let me quote the New York Times:

Recalling that period in his eulogy for his brother, Hunter Biden said his first memory was of being two years old and lying in a hospital bed beside Beau, who was telling him “I love you,” over and over again.  He said he did the same for his brother as Beau took his last breath.  “As it began, so did it end,” Hunter Biden said.

It is those tiny and timeless gestures sown in life that have the generative power to speak of God; a God writ large within what is small.      When we learn to live with attention, our awareness of them will grow and branch forth; reaching through our puny and exaggerated lives so that, like the birds of the sky, we might learn to trust the shade and hidden nature of such things.

 

Father Tim Clark, Pastor

 

 

 
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