Listen! A sower went out to sow …


Listen! A sower went out to sow …

Listen! A sower went out to sow… You’ve got me there!

One of my favorite places to relax and spend time is our De Mazenod Farm, one of a bunch of De Mazenod Door Outreach ministries at St. Patrick Parish in Hamilton, ON. A couple of years ago, the Diocese of Hamilton leased and entrusted the care of 19 acres of farmland just outside of the city of Hamilton to us. At this point, it’s a learning experience; but so far, the farm grows produce and raises egg-laying chickens and honeybees to provide food for our guests at the De Mazenod Door kitchen. A couple of miniature goats provide emotional support to those dealing with stress and anxiety or simply want some fun entertainment.

Earlier in the spring, I worked with a group of High School students. Our task was to plant potatoes in the fields. I explained to the students in detail how the seeds should be planted, how deep, how far apart and how to appropriately place them. Well… when you are working with teenagers, your “perfect” way of seeing how the stuff should be done is not always executed perfectly. By the end of the day, I wondered how many potatoes we will actually have when the time comes for the harvest…

To my surprise, a couple of weeks later I noticed first spouts coming out of the ground; and now the field is filled with healthy looking potatoes plants that promise great harvest in the fall. They might not have been planted “perfectly”, according to my standards, but they grew perfectly according to the standards of nature and ultimately its Creator.

The story of the sower sowing the seeds reminds us about the greatness of God despite of our imperfections. God has a perfect plan for us, and as we discern our vocation, God’s call for us, he plants the seeds. Sometimes we get busy in life, preoccupied with the daily responsibilities that it seems like the seed fell “on the path, and the birds came and ate them up”. Sometimes we respond enthusiastically to the call, based more on the emotions rather than thoughtful discernment and “they spang up quickly, since they had no depth of soil”. And when the reality sinks in “they were scorched; and since they had no root, they withered away”. Sometimes we might be afraid to answer the call because of our own struggles, lack of encouragement or simply a fear of change and letting go of what we’re used to settling in as comfortable but unfortunately not purposeful or fulfilling. It seems like the seed fell “among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them”.

The seeds of vocation might not fall on the “perfect” soil at times. But when we listen, when we embrace courage rather than fear, when we discern with open mind, heart and will, then “seeds fell on good soil and brought forth grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty”.

Our discernment might be not perfect; but God is perfect! Our life journey might be rocky at times; but God has a clear direction. We might get afraid or discouraged; but God calls us, “Do not be afraid! Follow me!”

All we have to do is to: Listen! A sower went out to sow…

By Jarek Pachocki, OMI
OMI Lacombe Canada – Vocation Director
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