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The Parable of the Sower is often told at harvest time, using a visual image of sowing actual seeds to make a point about people’s lives.
Anyone giving in to despondency about the state of the world or the state of the church may have their eyes fixed on the path, or on the stony ground, or on the rampant thorns. There are plenty of all of them.
But there’s also a harvest growing and plenty more good soil for the seed to spread to.
People do want something more than what the world seems to offer. They need the right seed.
Think of people working in the most terrible situations – whether facing famine, or trying to provide clean water, or working for peace in war-torn countries, or working with people in terrible circumstances close to home.
They’re all sowing the seed, not in obviously receptive places but where it’s needed.
It may not be referred to as the word of God. Some may specifically say it’s not that. But anytime someone is doing the right thing, and bringing genuine love and hope, that is of God.
This isn’t about trying to claim actions as Christian when people might avoid that label, but to identify with what Jesus was telling people.
Think of the Parable of Sheep and Goats in Matthew’s Gospel. Those who didn’t realise they’d been helping Jesus had nevertheless been doing so. Those who were sure they had never neglected to help him had missed the point.
Being Christian isn’t about not being some other faith or no faith, and it’s more than believing in God and Jesus – it’s about loving our neighbours as ourselves.
That is worth emphasising in the current political and environmental
Reverend Liz Gibson, Isle of Mull