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  "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in his field" Mt. 13:31


 

Sermon Excerpt: Believing is Seeing Matthew 13:31-33 by Rev. Frank Schaefer

Those of you who don’t know what a mustard seed looks like, it is one of the tiniest seeds you’ll ever see. In fact, you can hardly see it with your naked eye. And yet, it grows into a big tree; actually, it’s technically a shrub, but it looks like a tree, it’s as large as a tree. And many birds will be able to make their nest in it’s canopy.

Many preachers through the ages have focused on this amazing contrast, of tiny beginnings that can lead to big results. And in that sense, the mustard seed is a perfect simile to the kingdom of God. Sometimes we see very small beginnings that yield amazing results.

As Madeleine Boucher says, “Most likely the meaning of the similitude lies in the contrast between the smallness of the mustard seed and the greatness of the full-grown shrub, so large that the birds can find shelter in it. . . . This similitude, then, is clearly about the contrast between the small beginnings and the final greatness of God’s work.”

Now, we see very small beginnings in our own faith community. And God wants us to have faith that this humble new church start will grow into something big; something that will change and improve the life of people around us, a ministry that will provide shelter and a spiritual home for people in this community.

I want to read another Scripture passage to you where Jesus talks about a mustard seed: “Truly, I tell you, ff you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you” (Mt 17:20). Now, that’s a big statement, isn’t it?

If you have just a little faith, you can move mountains. That tiny little faith can move mountains, it can actually move mountains. Well, I don’t know about actual mountains, by I definitely believe that our faith can move metaphorical mountains. Your faith can move mountains in your life, in your community. How encouraging is that?

There is a saying in the world “seeing is believing” and a lot of people live by that mantra. People are saying: unless you can show me, I’m not going to believe it.

The truth is that today you often have to believe first before you can see. That’s true even of the Scientific community. You have to first believe theories before you can understand what’s going on in quantum physics and other physics processes...

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