Today’s first reading from Jeremiah 13 seems a very odd tale at first. God tells Jeremiah to go buy a loincloth, then go hide it, then go get it again. Inevitably, the loincloth rots. In the Gospel from Matthew 13, Jesus tells two parables, the parable of the mustard seed and of the yeast.
God is teaching Jeremiah a lesson through the loincloth. When Jeremiah goes to get it after a long period of time, it has rotted. God says that is what Judah’s pride is going to do to them. Pride gives us “soul rot.” Of all the sins, pride is the worst. Pride is when we feel as though we have no need of God anymore. As though we know better than He how to run our lives.
God tells Jeremiah that the people shall be like the rotted loincloth, “good for nothing.” When we become filled with pride, we, too, become good for nothing. God cannot use us if we have no need of Him. The more we recognize our need for God, the more we become good for something. And that something is nothing less than spreading the Kingdom of God. And if there is one thing I’d like to be good for, it is that!
Father, help us to always recognize the fact that without you, we are nothing. Help us to keep pride away, that we may be faithful messengers of the Kingdom. Amen.