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Mar 9 / Chuck Smith, Jr.

Day Forty-four – Matthew 13:31-35

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you

He presented another parable to them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field; and this is smaller than all other seeds, but when it is full grown, it is larger than the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches.” Matthew 13:31-32

Parables are not illustrations orĀ evenĀ mere analogies, but also riddles–they conceal as much as they reveal (Mt. 13:13-15). Some people who heard Jesus’ parables were able to solve the puzzle, while others went away, no doubt, confused or unimpressed. The truth was there for those who had ears to hear (vv. 9 & 43), but not everyone was prepared or willing to hear it.

In certain respects, Jesus today is similar to the parables he taught centuries ago. He puts himself within reach of our faith, yet he is hidden from our eyes. Not being able to see Jesus, some people will go away, saying, “There’s nothing to this.” Others, however, who have ears to hear will enter the mystery and come to know him.

What do we have in our hands today?
Maybe you have very little.
What can we do for the kingdom of heaven today?
Maybe you cannot imagine doing anything for the kingdom.

But that is one of “the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven” (v. 11); it does not depend on us for its existence or growth. The kingdom has within itself an earth-shaking power to spread. What starts as a seed “smaller than all other seeds” grows into a tree large enough to provide a perch for many birds.

The parables are identical to the mustard seed. Within them are hidden the irresistable power of life.

You can plant a tiny seed today in your field. You do not even have to know what this means in actual practice. Regardless, you will be given the opportunity. And by God’s grace and for the love of Jesus, you will plant a seed.

O Jesus, our Healer and Helper, what have You prepared for us in this day? Maybe not what we want. We are certain that some sort of blessing awaits us. But today may not be for us. That is fine. Let us be for others, according to Your will. If no more comes of this day, allow us at least this one request: that before the sun sets, we have dropped a single, tiny seed into the gound.

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