January 27, 2017 – Friday in the 3rd Week of the Church Year

Saint for the day: Angela Merici – (March 21, 1474 – January 27, 1540)

Scripture Readings for today’s Liturgy:

Hebrews 10:32-39    –    Psalm 37    –    Mark 4:26-34

“From Glory to Glory He’s changing me.”

Both the readings today have a common thread: substantial change. Hebrews reminds us that our “enlightenment” soon brings us much suffering. St. Therese said to God, “If this is the way you treat your friends. No wonder you have so few?”

But the Gospel reminds us that we must follow the path of Jesus – birth-life – death and then resurrection. Following Christ means we must experience substantial change. The examples given in the two parables tries to point this out: “unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground…” I love the image of the mustard seed & the notion that the end product – a highly seasoned spice is the end product that must be used sparingly: a touch here and there but not so much as to overwhelm the thing that it is meant to “season.”

There’s power in that tiny grain of pepper but it must be controlled. The image of the “ear of corn” also gives us an example of how God’s grace works in us. It shows us that we are just one part of something much bigger than ourselves and are united in the fact that we are rooted in Christ (the core of the ear.) If we use the image of “pop corn” we can see that this kind of transformation only comes about through the application of fire! And what a change it is! Did you ever think about how this totally different, huge puff of delicious white emerges out of that little, tiny, hard, inedible kernel?

That’s the kind of transformation that God will bring about in our lives if we are willing to let Him put the heat to our lives. The Kingdom of God is within you. Let it explode into all it wants to be. Amen!

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