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July 18

Matthew 13, 28-30

Something to read

He answered, “An enemy has done this.” The slaves said to him, “Then do you want us to go and gather them?” But he replied, “No; for in gathering the weeds you would uproot the wheat along with them. Let both of them grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, collect the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.”
New Revised Standard Version

Something to think about

The patience of God is something we will never grasp – though this parable tries to give us a glimpse of it.

We prefer to pull out the weed, expel the bad pupil, lock up the criminal, and disenfranchise the incompetent colleague for the sake of the fruitful plant, the good student, the law-abiding citizen and the successful business.

There will come a day when the bad is eradicated. But not yet. For now, it seems that tolerance and protection of what growth is happening is much more important than eliminating weeds. The motivation must be love, rather than fear of destruction.

To us ‘slaves’ it may at times seem that the Master’s reticence to act decisively is having a detrimental effect on the harvest. There are so many bad people and systems creating injustice. But we must focus on looking after and nurturing what is growing, not on destroying the rest.

Something to do

If you can, buy and eat some blue cheese. Think about how, without the mould, the cheese would not be as tasty. Remember that sometimes, what we would like to eradicate could, in time, become a blessing!

Something to pray

Dear Lord, you are always motivated by love and a desire to create and redeem. We know we often act out of fear instead.
As we get to know you better, may we reach a stage when we too are on the lookout for the creative and loving response. When we are confident that such responses will win out, in the end. And where we are not paralysed with fear in the face of what is evil in the world.

Today’s contributor is Anna Potts, a former Regional Co-ordinator for Christian Aid


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