On Good Soil

Gospel Reflection for Friday, January 29th, 2021 — Mark 4:26-34

The more things seemingly change, it’s remarkable how much they stay the same. "Vanity of vanities," says the author of Ecclesiastes; "vanity of vanities! All is vanity,” and “ there is nothing new under the sun." We often get so puffed up with pride in our modern times, thinking we’re so much more advanced than our ancestors -- but, so much virtually remains the same.

Do you ever pause to consider how blessed we are to live in this country? Yes, even considering the political crud we’re dealing with at the moment, we’re still blessed beyond compare. I simply wish to take a moment and thank God for all He has done for us.

One of the blessings we most often take for granted is the abundance and variety of good food that we have. Even in the midst of the COVID-related shortages for a few months, one only has to walk down the aisles of your local mega supermarket to see shelves virtually overflowing with every kind of food imaginable. With relatively few sad exceptions, most children in this nation have never known a day where there was nothing to eat. Instead, we have the challenge of teaching them to eat right and keep active to stay healthy.

In our busy lives, we don't often think about where that all the food in the stores comes from. The USA has transformed from an agricultural to a technological culture. The nuances of farming, cultivating fields, and even animal husbandry are quite often the furthest thoughts from our minds.

Do you ever reflect that beyond your neighborhood supermarket and the warehouse, before it is processed, every kind of food must be grown by someone? That bagel you ate for breakfast this morning was made from wheat, and a farmer raised the wheat. Your bacon came from a hog farm, probably out in Iowa somewhere, and a farmer fed and cared for that hog. Your orange juice came from an orchard, where a farmer tended to the trees and gathered the orange harvest.