Reading and the Gospel 19.7.2020

READING OF THE DAY

First reading from the Book of Wisdom
WIS 12:13, 16-19

There is no god besides you who have the care of all,
that you need show you have not unjustly condemned.
For your might is the source of justice;
your mastery over all things makes you lenient to all.
For you show your might when the perfection of your power is disbelieved;
and in those who know you, you rebuke temerity.
But though you are master of might, you judge with clemency,
and with much lenience you govern us;
for power, whenever you will, attends you.
And you taught your people, by these deeds,
that those who are just must be kind;
and you gave your children good ground for hope
that you would permit repentance for their sins.

 

Second reading from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Romans
ROM 8:26-27

Brothers and sisters:
The Spirit comes to the aid of our weakness;
for we do not know how to pray as we ought,
but the Spirit himself intercedes with inexpressible groanings.
And the one who searches hearts
knows what is the intention of the Spirit,
because he intercedes for the holy ones
according to God’s will.

GOSPEL OF THE DAY

From the Gospel according to Matthew
MT 13:24-30

Jesus proposed another parable to the crowds, saying:
“The kingdom of heaven may be likened to a man
who sowed good seed in his field.
While everyone was asleep his enemy came
and sowed weeds all through the wheat, and then went off.
When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well.
The slaves of the householder came to him and said,
‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field?
Where have the weeds come from?’
He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’
His slaves said to him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’
He replied, ‘No, if you pull up the weeds
you might uproot the wheat along with them.
Let them grow together until harvest;
then at harvest time I will say to the harvesters,
“First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles for burning;
but gather the wheat into my barn.”’”

 

WORDS OF THE HOLY FATHER

We can be confident because the Word of God is a creative word, destined to become the “full grain in the ear” (v. 28). This Word, if accepted, certainly bears fruit, for God Himself makes it sprout and grow in ways that we cannot always verify or understand. (cf. v. 27). All this tells us that it is always God, it is always God who makes his Kingdom grow. That is why we fervently pray “thy Kingdom come”. It is He who makes it grow. Man is his humble collaborator, who contemplates and rejoices in divine creative action and waits patiently for its fruits. (Angelus, 14 June 2015)

 

REFLECTION

(From Catholic daily reflections.com)

Jesus proposed another parable to the crowds, saying: “The kingdom of heaven may be likened to a man who sowed good seed in his field. While everyone was asleep his enemy came and sowed weeds all through the wheat, and then went off.  When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well.”  Matthew 13:24-26

The introduction to this parable should wake us up to the reality of the evil one in our midst.  The specific action of the “enemy” in this parable is disturbing.  Imagine if this story were true and you were the farmer who worked very hard at sowing the seed throughout your field.  Then, if you awoke to hear the news that weeds had been sown also, you would be quite saddened, angered and disappointed.

But this parable is especially about the Son of God.  Jesus is the one who has sown the good seed of His Word and watered that seed with His Precious Blood.  But the evil one, the devil, has also been at work trying to undermine the work of our Lord.

Again, if this were a true story about you as a farmer, it would be hard to refrain from much anger and a desire for revenge.  But the truth is that Jesus, as the Divine Sower, does not allow the evil one to steal His peace.  Instead, He has allowed this action of the evil one to remain for now. But in the end, the works of evil will be destroyed and burned in the unquenchable fire.

What’s also interesting to note is that Jesus does not root out all evil in our world here and now.  According to the parable, He refrains so that the good fruit of the Kingdom will not be negatively affected.  In other words, this parable reveals to us the interesting truth that the “weeds” all around us, that is, the evil alive within our world, cannot affect our growth in virtue and entrance into the Kingdom of God.  We may have to endure evil on a daily basis and find ourselves surrounded by it at times, but our Lord’s willingness to allow evil for now is a clear sign that He knows it cannot affect our growth in virtue if we do not let it.

Reflect, today, upon the reality of evil in your world.  It’s essential that you name evil activity for what it is.  But evil cannot ultimately affect you.  And the evil one, despite his malicious attacks, will ultimately be defeated.  Reflect upon the hope that this truth brings and renew your trust in the power of God this day.

Lord, I pray that You do deliver us all from the evil one.  May we be freed from his lies and snares and always keep our eyes upon You, our Divine Shepherd.  I turn to You in all things, dear Lord.  Jesus, I trust in You.