The Parable of the Mustard Seed
31 Jesus told them another parable: “The Kingdom of heaven is like this. A man takes a mustard seed and sows it in his field. 32 It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it grows up, it is the biggest of all plants. It becomes a tree, so that birds come and make their nests in its branches.”
Jesus is talking about the black mustard plant that grows in Middle East. The seed is extremely small (about a millimetre in diameter), but it can grow to about three to four metres tall.
In this parable, Jesus teaches that although the Kingdom of God started small, with Jesus and the disciples, it would grow and spread across the world to unlimited numbers of followers. He wanted people to know that the mustard seed represented the humble beginnings of the church, starting very small but growing to reach millions throughout the world and that he was the planter. This type of mustard plant may not be familiar to us but we all know the quotation “Mighty oaks from little acorns grow” – where great things can come from small beginnings. It is comforting to know that God is at the helm of our faith and we are part of the world-wide church.
Prayer of guidance by St Basil of Caesarea who lived in the 4th century
Steer the ship of my life, good Lord,
to your quiet harbour,
where I can be safe from the storms of sin and conflict.
Show me the course I should take.
Renew in me the gift of discernment,
so that I can always see the right direction in which I should go.
And give me the strength and the courage to choose the right course,
even when the sea is rough and the waves are high,
knowing that through enduring hardship and danger,
in your name, we shall find comfort and peace.
What small action could we do today that could potentially reap huge benefits for our world?