From Matthew Chapter 13:
31Here is another illustration Jesus used: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed planted in a field. 32It is the smallest of all seeds, but it becomes the largest of garden plants; it grows into a tree, and birds come and make nests in its branches.”
I have found this a helpful parable to think about lately, especially when health, or rather its limitations, means I am not as active as I would like to be.
In a Church, that thankfully has awakened to its call to mission in familiar or fresh expressions, there is something here in this parable to help those who cannot respond in the manner they are challenged to by younger/enthusiastic/healthy leaders, due to ill health, lack of energy etc: don’t feel guilty or pressurised to do what your body or mind has not got the strength to do; just be in Christ, and somehow you become a tree in which/whom others will find a welcoming space and refuge.
In the renewed emphasis on “going” there is still a place for being a welcoming shade from the heat of the day or the dangers and terrors of the night. There are still precious people seeking a place where they can have space to fold their wings and rest in order that they might learn to spread their wings and fly, or fly again.
“Sheep come where there is grass,” is something I head the Lord say to me in a comforting and gentle way when I was driving the other day. I got home and discovered sheep had been released into a field behind our house…
So to all you strongly rooted trees, who at times wish you could move more freely, listen and receive this: your rootedness will bless others. May the birds come to you. May sheep safely graze near to you…..