From the Pastor’s Desk (7/27/2014)
Jul 27, 2014
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
The Gospel reading for this Sunday contains three parables that are unique to Matthew: the hidden treasure, the merchant that finds a pearl of great price and the parable of the net thrown into the sea. The message is very clear: Once you find Jesus you must respond to him with total generosity leaving the old ways behind and embrace the new.
The kingdom of heaven is like a man that sows good seed, a mustard seed, yeast, a hidden treasure; a merchant and the net thrown into the sea. How can the Kingdom of heaven look like very different things? How can it be like a mustard seed and the net cast into the sea? How can it be like a man that plants good seed and a merchant of precious pearls? In reality, the Kingdom of Heaven cannot be compared to any of these things. Jesus taught us in parables and used the image of the Kingdom of God to talk about himself and his mission. The hidden treasure is not something material but Jesus himself. He is the supreme goodness, truth and beauty. The Kingdom of Heaven is Jesus! The central message of the Gospel is Jesus. He should be the unique and truthful treasure of our hearts.
When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it: Those who find Jesus are filled with joy and happiness and are willing to “sells all that he or she has”. That is the price of the Kingdom! Everything we have: talent, treasure and time. Everything to the service of the Gospel. This treasure requires the total investment of what we have. No more calculations, no more coldness, no more distance! Everything we have is little for the Kingdom; where righteousness acquires the right proportion and value. The Treasure is God revealed in Jesus. Our hearts are restless until we find him.
What are the things that hinder us finding the treasure that makes us happy? The parables attempt to accentuate the Gospel proclaimed by Jesus. He is the true treasure to whom we are invited to discover. The emphasis is placed on finding Christ who challenges us to detach ourselves from the things of this world to acquire eternal heaven. “Do you understand all this?” I hope that to Jesus’ question, we can answer like the disciples: “yes, Lord” because only accepting Him, we can leave our old ways behind and become anew.