Daily Reflection
September 17th, 2005

Jeanne Schuler

Philosophy Department
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Memorial of St. Robert Bellarmine, S.J.
1 Timothy 6:13-16
Psalm 100:1b-2, 3, 4, 5
Luke 8:4-15

The Smallness of Beginning

The beginning is small. A seed cupped in our hands drops into the hole and is covered by loose dirt. In darkness the seed stirs. We trust that what lies hidden will push through the soil someday. A green blade headed for the light. Small but persistent. As far as we can see in every direction--towering burr oaks, the thick vine wrapped around the fence, grasslands that touch the horizons, acres of corn. They all begin with a small seed splitting quietly underground.

The path must be followed. We cannot skip ahead to the harvest without months of sunshine and enough rain. So much can go wrong. The farmers’ worries stretch out like fences.

Your word drops into our lives quietly. The beginning is small. The psalm finds us, “whose kindness endures forever.” Love in action awakens us. Someone speaks out against bigotry. Others ask for mercy. Weekly liturgies calm our fears. Slowly we see and listen. A process is underway. A new heart is growing within.

The beginning is not noisy. We did not fall head over heels with a glance. No trumpets sounded. But the word that takes root is ever changing. What begins small keeps leading us onward. One day it is my voice that speaks out. It is I saying yes, climbing on the bus, and heading into the unknown.

Every seedling faces dangers. Weeds, thorns, hungry critters, clay and rocky soil, roots grasping for moisture. We too are hounded. Distractions, debts, kids in trouble, aloneness, tragedy. Daily life beats us down.

You warn us against the crowd. It tempts us with questions. It wants answers, proof, and understanding now. It has no patience for the slowness of growth.

Against the odds, faith grows. From the seed comes abundance. You nurture us step by step.

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