Readings and prayers for Sun 17 June

The Gospel reading for this Sunday is Mark 4.26-34 

Jesus said, “What shall we say the kingdom of Godis like, or what parable shall we use to describe it?  It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest seed you plant in the ground.
 “Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds of the air can perch in its shade.” 
Earlier in the month we thought about the Trinity – one of the greatest mysteries in Christianity.  While we can’t fully understand what it means for one God to be three persons, we can learn something about God from the picture of a family, or a community.  In Jesus’ parables, he too offers us pictures  from daily life to tell us something about the mystery of God. 
The stories in the Gospels come from a society that is very different from ours – one where most people earn their living through farming or fishing.  In stories drawn from their everyday experience, Jesus helps them to see something of the Kingdom.  
In the stories of our lives we can also see something of God and of his Kingdom. Today’s parables show that the Kingdom of God starts in fragility and not in force – but that something which begins in an insignificant way can be life-changing.  What stories from our lives have helped us to discover this hidden power of God’s Kingdom?

Prayer intentions

Pray for all that the Church Urban Fund and Contextual Theology Centre do to help Christians share their stories of God’s transforming power – in particular the work being done through churches’ engagement in community organising, which begins with relationship-building and the sharing of stories.
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