Perhaps the most well-known of the parables is that which compares the kingdom of God to the mustard seed (Matt. 13:31–32). “It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants” (v. 32). God plants tiny seeds of purpose in each of us that we are expected to cultivate in our own God-given style in cooperation with the Holy Spirit.
Trust, and Act
This is where we need to place our trust in the Lord. Throughout the Bible, we are encouraged to trust the Lord. We are told repeatedly to “be not afraid.” Trust in God nourishes the soul and provides essential nourishment for taking action in the Body of Christ.
Love the Least
In His humanity, Jesus Christ associated with the poor, the deprived, the underprivileged, those at the fringes of society, the sick, and the spiritually impoverished. Collectively, all who experience these conditions are considered poor and are worthy of our love and works of charity and justice.
Be His Witnesses
Evangelization—it’s not a bad word. Candidly, I would cringe at the thought of evangelizing before I had a chance to understand what it means and the many forms it can take. It is not only through sharing (speaking) the Good News that one evangelizes, but also by “radiating the love of Jesus by the everyday way we speak, think, and act” (CCCC 2006, 570) that we exemplify the good tidings Jesus brought into the world. When we live our faith daily, we strengthen our relationship with Jesus, and we become His witnesses in the world.
“But as to what is within, give alms, and behold, everything will be clean for you” (Luke 11:41).
Giving alms is an act of charity using financial or material means to help those in need. It is donating money, goods, or services to those who are less fortunate. Where almsgiving is directed is not quite as important as how it is performed. Giving with a generous heart, with some sacrifice, and without the expectation of receiving anything in return is the message here. When we empty ourselves of these desires, we open space for God to fill with His love, and we share that love with others by giving generously.
As these seeds sprout and grow in and through us, they can take root, build a sturdy foundation, and spread according to God’s plan. Some may become small yet fruitful plants in your backyard or your community. Others may grow like the mustard seed, branching out in all directions and touching multitudes by the grace of God. The point is this: we need to be aware of the invitation to act when God plants that seedling, and we must respond in the affirmative so that God’s kingdom will grow through us. We need to be aware of the invitation to act when God plants that seedling, and we must respond in the affirmative so that God’s kingdom will grow through us.
(Excerpted from The Capillaries of Christ: Understanding the Part You Play in His Body)