My Dear Sisters and Brothers! The first man was created of the dirt of the soil that is the environment for the vegetation, so that the human being could become the environment for the growth of the word of God. That’s why as soon as the first people were created God gave them the commandment not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. They were to kill, or to use more religious word, to mortify their desire to be like God.
St Paul explains that in the second reading for this Mass taken from the Letter to the Romans when he speaks: “From the beginning till now the entire creation has been groaning in one great act of giving birth.” Look, the soil of our planet keeps giving birth to the vegetation. We who, as the Bible says, were created of the soil of the earth are created for the same purpose to give birth to the seeds of the Word of God sown in us.
How to be the friendly environment for the word of God? In the same Letter to the Romans, just a few verses earlier we read: “If by the Spirit you put an end to the misdeeds of the body, put them to death, you will live.” A Christian isn’t a lucky individual who doesn’t have any problems or issues with himself or herself. On the contrary such a person seeing thorns or weeds, which in us take the form of our sins and of our weakness, chooses not to let then grow but to cut them down. Then they become the food, compost for the seeds sown by God.
How can you put to death the misdeeds of the body? By choosing TODAY not to act on them. Don’t worry about tomorrow. If TODAY you are drawn to be selfish, choose to focus on the needs of your husband or wife, your children or your parents, your church community. If TODAY anger is boiling in you choose to be kind and patient. If TODAY temptations of flesh are evident choose to distract yourself by doing some work or spending time with your friends. Look, there isn’t a selfish person. There isn’t an angry person. There isn’t a lustful person. But situations arise when people choose to be selfish, angry, impure etc. However every time you choose, with the grace of God of course, which is like that rain coming down from heaven we heard of in the first reading from Isaiah, every time you choose not to follow those misdeeds, you are pulling out a sinful weed in you. I guess it will appear again tomorrow with a new situation in your life but TODAY you are making good compost of that misdeed so the seeds of God’s Words. A disciple Jesus presents to us in the Gospel for this Mass is like black, rich soil. In him or her the seeds of God’s Word grow and ripe bearing and abundant fruit as St Paul wrote in the Letter to the Galatians: “The fruit of the Spirit is charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, truthfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”