Reflecting on Matthew 13: 1-23
Don’t ask us what we were thinking. In this challenging economic climate, and with big chains just blocks from us, my pharmacist-husband Ben and I bought a beautiful retail space and opened up an old-time drugstore/coffee shop.
I’m not sure I could really articulate why we needed to do this until the other day. I looked around and saw neighbors who live just houses away from each other finally meeting and enjoying their children together out on the front sidewalk.
Some generous and kind new friends from the neighborhood sat outside, talking to another friend and me about the bitterness they feel when religion is forced on them, when people carry Scripture signs to football games, when businesses put religious quotes on their billboards. Now, I actually like these things, and was getting ready to say so.
But a dear and wise friend of mine happened to be in the store right then. She moved closer to them and said, “Tell me more about your pain. Tell me why you resist faith. Let me help you touch your wounds.”
And then the floodwaters opened, and all their frustration, and feelings of isolation, and confusion and resentment poured out.
A few days later they returned to the store for a prescription. Jane (not her real name) hugged me and said No one has ever asked me about my loss of faith before. That conversation was more healing than three years in the religious setting of my childhood.
And it happened just because some faithful sower took the time to plant a seed in fertile ground, to listen, and then to be brave enough to invite strangers into the intimacy of their own struggles.
And I’ll bet that seed bears fruit and yields a hundredfold.
In what ways have you seen the fruits of the seeds sown in your life?
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I have come to light a fire on the earth; how I wish it were already burning (Lk.12:49).