Mark 4:1-20 is the story of Jesus telling a parable. The use of parables by Jesus was a regular tool. In a way it moved the conversation one step away from those involved. Instead of directly addressing people and specific situations (which Jesus still did often), parables allowed Jesus to tell a symbolic story that people could work through and work at interpreting. He did not tell people what they needed to do or change, and yet he would invite them into a time of reflection and conversation.
This is one example where the disciples are confused. If they understood it the first time, they at least wanted to be reassured of it's meaning directly from Jesus. This is one parable that I can relate to often. In ministry and teaching and mentoring, how often are our goals realized? Furthermore, Jesus never specifies who/what is represented in the sower or soil. I often think the sower represents God, Jesus, the Bible, or teachers/pastors/mentors. Other times I wonder if the church and our neighborhoods represent the different types of soil. Do we foster a place where the gospel can grow in our lives? And yet the simple specified truth is that sometimes God's message is accepted and acted upon, and other times it isn't. There have been seasons in my life where I have felt close to God and "successful" in my faith, and other times where I feel distant, or when I realize afterwards that it took me a long time to grasp something deep in my faith. It reminds me to be thankful that farmers sow each year, and not once a lifetime.
Children can follow along in Shine On 204 and Spark 292.
Daily Prayers to recite, remember and live by:
Lords Prayer (198 in Shine On, 278 in Spark)
Psalm 23 (129 in Shine On, 160 in Spark)
Events & Evites:
Tory - Pastor of Children and Youth Faith Formation.