One of the best scenes in the movie, The Princess Bride is when Princess Buttercup and (the Dread Pirate Roberts) Wesley are about to enter the Fire Swamp. Buttercup looks at Wesley and asks, “what about the R.O.U.S.s?” “The Rodents of Unusual Size? I’m sure they don’t exist.” He says the as an R.O.U.S. makes an appearance, and Buttercup’s back is to it and is oblivious.
Size makes a difference. Often, we are overwhelmed by a problem. As a child, we could have been overwhelmed by something being so much bigger than we were.
When we hear about the monumental amount of money some people have, and compare our meager bank accounts, size makes an impact. If you’ve ever been in a small car with a big semi coming up quickly behind you, size can be terrifying.
On the other hand, ants can carry 10–50 times (depending on species and gender) their weight. Humans can indeed lift such weight, but not actually walk and carry over long distances. Grasshoppers can jump 20 times their length from standing. The world record for human running long jump is not even 5 times.
Size does matter, but just not always in the way we think.
The people of Israel were not a powerful people. They had no physical place to provide them strength. Yet, this weak people God would take and overturn the ways of the world.
After years of oppression, God took the weakest man of the weakest family of the weakest tribe to remove the oppressors from the land.
Jesus uses a mustard seed to show the power of the Kingdom of God but notice that it is not a power of domination. It is a place a habitation and a place of new life. Yet this place of life and birth starts very small.
The Kingdom of God starts small in each of us. We often look at the tiny thing in us and wonder how we can make it through.
Yet, we must always keep in mind that it is God’s seed in us. The smallest thing of God is larger than the largest thing of humanity.
Oh, and the R.O.U.S.’s were defeated by using the power of the mind, not strength.
Jesus, thank you for the seed of faith. Holy Spirit, thank you for the nurturing of the seed in our souls. Heavenly Father, thank you for being the tree that gives us home and life. Amen.
1) What is one of the first memories you have of your size in comparison to another’s? What was the feeling like? Did it cause you to change focus or intent?
2) Why is it important to understand the imagery of the Kingdom of God in the image of the mustard seed?