Yesterday I handed out mustard seeds at church. Have you seen a mustard seed? No? You’re obviously not a fan of grainy mustard. Mustard seeds are many things. They are delicious and spicy, small and fully of promise. The mustard seed is more than meets the eye. Obviously I preached on Mark and the mustard seed and all manner of good things that can come from small packages. I love worshipping with this congregation and it was a wonderful day but something happened at the end of it that made me realize just how important small things can be.
The minister of that congregation (I withhold his name only because I don’t know if he wants to be an internet celebrity – ha ha) had just returned from a pilgrimage to Iona. He gifted me with a rock from the beach where Saint Columba landed and said to me “who knows, maybe he walked on this rock”. Maybe he did, maybe he didn’t but this rock and I have bonded over the past 24 hours. I turned the rock over and over in my hand as we drove home from church marvelling at it’s smooth surface and the pristine qualities of it. I found myself telling Alvin stories of Iona and my longing to go there. We spoke of travelling there together and weren’t hindered by road blocks but instead spoke positively as if it could happen. I thought about ways I could get more involved in the church again and began thinking that perhaps it was time to think beyond the present. This rock, this small white rock was a gift filled with possibilities for me. When it arrived in my midst it became more than just that rock, it was a seed. A seed that if planted will grow in it’s own time, in it’s own way.
Each day we are presented with seeds in our lives that if planted will grow and become something bigger than ourselves. The key thing we often miss is the actual planting of them. When ideas strike, opportunities happen or something just seeks to work out we often hesitate and prevent things from beginning. I find myself thinking of the farmer from yesterday’s passage who just scattered the seeds and things grew. If only we as God’s people took what we had and scattered it far and wide. Imagine what would grow then. Imagine the possibilities that might be realized.