Year A: 15th Sunday in Ordinary Time
First Reading: Isaiah 55: 10-11
The First Reading takes us back to the words of Isaiah who also used the image of the Word of God coming to the earth and making things grow.
This time, however, he uses the image of the rain and snow rather than seed.
It is a fact of life that plants need moisture to grow. In hot and arid countries, the rains are longed for and cause of great rejoicing when they come. The blooming of the desert and dry lands can be miraculous as the water seeps into the seed and brings it to life - and what was barren land becomes carpeted with flowers.
Even in countries where rain is plentiful, there is something amazing about going out after the first rain after a dry spell - smelling the perfumes and seeing how the plants seem to have grown in the course of the shower.
More crucial to human life is rain to bring the food crops to harvest. No amount of planting can substitute for the water of the rains and winter snows.
Similarly, in our spiritual lives - the Word of God is indispensable to our bearing fruit. The seeds are there within us - but they need the Word to encourage them to germinate and grow and bear fruit.
The Word germinates the seed - and, going back to the image used by Isaiah, helps to produce bread for eating.
The Word brings forth the crop - but not just enough to fill out immediate needs - the yield is enough to provide seed for further sowings - sowings which will receive rain - and snow - and so the cycle goes on in the providence of the Word of God.
What does it mean for me?
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