King David sure fell from God’s grace in today’s first reading for mass. Just a couple of days ago, we were reading that King David was dancing with joy before the ark and found great favor with God, but then he blew it in today’s reading. He broke two of God’s commandments, by causing a beautiful woman to commit adultery, and then arranging for her husband to be killed in battle. He couldn’t have fallen further from God’s grace.
So why did he do it? He obviously wasn’t thinking. Satan lured him into looking at Bathsheba just a tad longer than he should have. We need to be careful about that when we surf the internet and one of those obscene images pops up, or something similar shows up in our junk email. All it takes is a glance that is not averted immediately. That is how pornography addictions start, both for men, and women too. Men are very visual when it comes to women, but King David wasn’t entirely to blame. Bathsheba should have been more careful to bathe in privacy too. Women often purposely entice men, or they else just don’t think about how their appearance tempts men. This is especially true in our parishes, during mass. Priest are just human beings. They live a chaste life, but they still have normal feelings about women.
It is especially wrong for young women to wear mini skirts, or dresses with low cleavage, or extremely short, shorts at mass. This is especially true for those who serve as Eucharist ministers or readers at mass. Women should also be extremely careful to dress modestly when they go to confession too. The Vatican requires women to dress modestly when they come for mass. If their shoulders are even bare, they are asked to cover them. Our parish priests need to do a better job at speaking up for wearing the appropriate kind of clothing when you come for mass, and especially when serving in any capacity on the altar during mass.
Many people are unaware that King David wrote most of the Psalms. The psalm for mass today was probably written by him. It is deeply filled with regret and contrition. It about breaks your heart when you read it. Who could not relate, at least a little bit, in the feelings expressed in this psalm? That’s the thing about the psalms, they express almost all of the feelings that human beings go through. It would be good to remember this, the next time you seek comfort and solace in the scriptures.
Jesus talks in today’s gospel, about seek that is scattered on the ground to grow crops, but God alone gives the growth. We are like that too. We are seeds that are scattered in the world and we are called to be a witness for Jesus Christ, but it is up to God if these seeds sprout or not. We can help encourage the growth by providing the right growing conditions, but the growth is up to God alone.
Christ goes on to tell us the parable of the mustard seed next. A tiny seed that grows into the greatest of all shrubs. Life is a miracle. It is the same way with the tiny seed of human life too. At conception a completely different set of DNA is formed and the tiny cell grows all by itself until one day it is an adult human being. We have the seeds of life, but God gives the growth.
Faith in God is like that too. Even a tiny step towards a deeper relationship with God can grow into something large and wonderful. Our pope took a single step toward a deeper faith in God, at some point in his life and it just kept growing into something beautiful for the Lord and for all of God’s people as well. His life should inspire us to do the same.
Daily Mass Readings:
2 Sm 11: 1-4a, 13-17; Ps 51: 3-4, 5-6a, 6bcd-7, 10-11; Mk 4: 21-25