Sunday, July 30, 2017

Looking Ahead

Father Perry D. Leiker, pastor
By Father Perry D. Leiker, pastor 

Quote of the Week: “Nothing is more despicable than respect based on fear.” — Albert Camus.

What would be worth so much to you that you would be willing to sell everything you own in order to posses it?

Good health, bringing someone back to life, being able to have a relationship with the love or your life, retrieving a child or family member being held against their will, freedom, justice?

Jesus tells us yet more parables about the kingdom of heaven. It is like a treasure hidden in a field – then one sells all they have to buy the field so they can have that treasure. And that person sells all that they have “out of joy.”

Or one sells all they have to buy the “pearl of great price.”

The kingdom of heaven is like a fisherman’s net collecting good and bad fish, then separating out the bad. And those instructed in the kingdom of heaven are like the head of a household who “brings from his household both the new and the old.”

These comparisons seem to be the best way that Jesus can describe the kingdom of heaven. He knows what these examples mean. A treasure, a beautiful pearl, fishing and getting a very mixed catch?

This kingdom is not the treasure or the pearl; it is like selling all you have with joy and selling all you have to be able to purchase, catch, choose and preserve the good.

The kingdom of heaven is dynamic and alive. The kingdom of heaven calls, compels, excites and causes us to make decisions and choices.

The kingdom of heaven illuminates all that we see and want. When the kingdom of heaven becomes alive in us, we find incomparable capabilities to love and to forgive.

The kingdom of heaven allows the cross-response we hear from Jesus’ lips: “Father, forgive them all, they know not what they do.”

The kingdom of heaven is an extraordinary gift to our inner spirit. When it engages us deep within our spirit, we can never be the same.

We are baptized to share in the role of Jesus Christ as priest, prophet and king.

The kingdom of heaven is planted within us in baptism and meant to sweep us up into the divine.

We pray today as always in the Lord’s prayer: “Thy kingdom come, they will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”

Father Perry D. Leiker is pastor of St. Bernard Church. Reach him at (323) 255-6142, Ext. 112; email Follow Father Perry on Twitter: @MrDeano76.

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