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Friday, July 27, 2012

Producing for Others

"The seed sown on rich soil is the one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and yields a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold." Mt 13:23

Jesus is often sharp tongued with his own people. When they do not open themselves to new hope or allow riches, power and domination over others to control their lives, he reminds them that while they might be on rich soil, they are allowing the "weeds" in the soil to strangle their spiritual life. It is not very different in our own day.

In Africa these days where I have the privilege of visiting, it is not difficult to see the same dynamics at work, but in a much more obvious and destructive way. There are one million people in the Kibera slum, and while the rent might only $1000 KS a month, it is often paid to rich politicians who have no reason to address the unbearable conditions in Kibera since it is a source of their wealth and power. Making money on the backs of the poor and destitute is despicable, something that Jesus addresses often in the gospel.

In the light of what is so obvious and horrible in the slums of Kenya, we all need to examine our practices. Is it just to always be searching for the least expensive item in a grocery story or shopping mall without considering whether those who fashioned the item we want are making a just wage in their own countries?  Honest prayer about our own lives can only be a good thing, allowing the Lord to find the rich soil of our lives so that our good works might produce a hundred, or sixty or thirty fold.

Today, be just to the people around you. Do not speak negatively about them. Search for their good qualities.

How has God found the good soil of your life in order to make you productive for others?

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