Friday, February 1, 2019

The sprouts are sprouting...

"...It is as if a man were to scatter seed on the land and would sleep and rise night and day and the seed would sprout and grow, he knows not how."
Mark 4:26-27

I told some folks this week that Wednesday was my BEST day yet at school. It was funny--I just felt like I got a hit each time at bat. Each class went well; kids were excited to learn, I was excited to share with them. It was great! I don't know what the difference was exactly. I've been at this for five months now and suddenly, I see sprouts where the seed was scattered. This is all so new to me I think I'm trying harder. I think I care more than I even realize. And, to be honest, I don't want to fail at this gig. I just want to do this job well and help the students. Now, I realize each day won't be as wonderful as Wednesday was, but the fact is, I know what it feels like to have a great game and I will shoot for that each day. I know not how, but God is quietly working in the whole deal, making the sprouts sprout. And I'm so grateful! Love, heidi

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Sowing wildly...

"Because for Jesus, success does not mean efficient, it means magnanimous--it means having the outrageous courage to give away the best of what we have been given, knowing that not all we give will come to life. But some will."
Paddy Gilger, SJ, "Give Us This Day"

This is one of the best reflections I've read on the parable of the Sower. I've related to the Sower being hugely extravagant with the seed, flinging it wildly about, not as concerned with its future success as just trusting that some of it will take hold. But I love the idea that Jesus had the outrageous courage to give away what he had, his healing, his compassion, his concern, to everyone regardless of who they were. Did you ever want another book of the bible called "Where Are They Now?" Picture it: a camera crew and interviewer go around to all the people who had contact with Jesus and found out what happened to them? What happened to the woman with the hemorrhage? The Rich Young Man? The guy with the demon at Gerasa? Did they continue to follow Jesus and live The Way with the apostles later? Jesus cast his net out far and wide, reaching people society had shunned, but how did it play out in the end? Jesus gave the best he had been given and knew not all would come to life. But some would. I think this is the way we should live our lives too. We should be kind to everyone, not knowing what their lives are really like. We should give everyone the benefit of the doubt, knowing only God knows their hearts. We should give the best we have to all of our endeavors, not being concerned with pay-back or pay-off. Success isn't efficient. Success is magnanimous. Love, heidi

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

We are fam-i-ly!

"Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother."
Mark 3:34-35

For some time I have felt that Jesus wasn't so much dissing his blood relatives in this passage (although it sounds kinda like it, doesn't it?) as he was making his "family" bigger. Jesus was inclusive all through his ministry. He included those whom his culture and society purposefully excluded. He went out of his way to be inclusive, even rendering himself "unclean" by touching a leper. Family ties were blurry to Jesus as shown in this passage and that should excite us. I think what Jesus is showing us here is that we are all "family" together...the family of humankind. We are all brothers and sisters and our responsibilities to our wider family are bigger than just taking care of our kinfolk. Jesus says that "whoever does the will of God" is family to him. He explained that the will of God is loving and caring for our neighbor, which involves much more than just showing up for  the family Thanksgiving dinner! Jesus wasn't diminishing his blood relations in this passage as much as he was elevating everyone else to the position of his family--his loved ones. How can we manifest that in our world on a January Tuesday? Love, heidi