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Vigilant, patient, hopeful

That parable about the wheat and the weed, the good seed and the bad seed (cfr. Mt 13,24-30) provides us with a precious lesson that is most useful and relevant especially for our present times.

We cannot overemphasize the fact that in this world, especially nowadays, good and evil can be so mixed up that we would find it hard to distinguish between the two. The good may appear like evil to us, and vice-versa. Also, what may start as good can turn out bad later on, and the other way around, what can start as bad can turn out good in the end.

In the face of all this, we should just listen carefully to what Christ wants us to learn from this parable. It is none other than that we need always to be vigilant, patient and hopeful.

We always have to remember that while we have to do all that we can, in the end it would be God who will take care of everything, who will perfect and complete things that we get involved in, who will make the final judgment as to which is good and which is bad.

But, yes, we have to upgrade our vigilance skills especially these days when we are living in an increasingly complex world. The powerful new things we are enjoying these days, while giving us a lot of convenience and advantages, can also occasion greater danger since they can also lead us to graver forms of self-indulgence and other disorders not only in terms of physical, mental, psychological health, but more so in terms of our spiritual and moral health.

We should not take this need for granted. We have to continually update and upgrade our vigilance skills. Remember Christ telling his disciples: “Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life…Be vigilant at all times.” (Lk 21,34.36)

We also need to stretch some more our patience, or our capacity to suffer, to bear the burdens and pressures of the times, the unavoidable sins and their consequences. In that parable of the wheat and the weeds, the master told the servants not to uproot the weeds in the meantime since it would just also damage the wheat. He advised them to wait till harvest time when the separation can be finally made.

Obviously, to be patient does not mean that we do nothing about the bad situation we may be in and just suffer. We should do what we can to clean up our environment, but in a way that should not cause more harm and damage.

In fact, we should do a lot of good and purification. But we have to remember always that we can never solve everything definitively while here on earth. We live in an imperfect world and we should just learn to live with that condition without compromising the distinction between good and evil. In a sense we have to expect to get dirty but without giving away what is truly essential in us.

Lastly, the parable encourages us to strengthen our hope that is firmly anchored on our faith and trust in the ever-wise and omnipotent providence of God. We should remember that it was God who started everything and it will also be he who will end, complete and perfect everything. Ours is simply to go along with him.*

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