Last Sunday Jesus began His parables on the Kingdom of Heaven by using common and insignificant things (mustard seed and yeast) to contrast its small beginning with its great ending. Today He depicts the Kingdom of Heaven as a treasure and a pearl. I would like to reflect on what brings about this difference of value.
In the First Reading from 1 Kings, Solomon knew what to ask from God, not riches nor long life but wisdom ----- an understanding mind to discern between good and evil and to do what is right. The humble beginning of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth may be totally unnoticeable and neglected by most people. It takes someone like Solomon who was meek but daring enough to ask for the gift of wisdom in order to detect its existence. With this gift, the Kingdom of Heaven could be seen no longer as a tiny seed or worthless yeast, but a treasure and a pearl. It is so valuable that those who discover it are willing to give up all things for it.
The value of the Kingdom itself is undoubtedly supreme but it could be unknown and not perceived by people of its true value due to lack of wisdom. We often admire those “wise” investors who have insights and who prosper in their investments but we overlook the necessary insight for life's ultimate goal. To acquire this insight, we have to have an open heart and a willing spirit so that the grace of God can work and illumine us. “For even one who is perfect among human beings will be regarded as nothing without the wisdom that comes from [God].” (WIs. 9:6).
Jesus began His parables of the Kingdom of Heaven with wheat and weeds and concluded with good and bad fish. The coexistence of both the “evil” and the “righteous” in the world no doubt requires patience and tolerance but also wisdom to differentiate them. Recognizing our deficiency and our dependency on God, let us, with a humble heart, learn from Solomon to pray for God's gift of wisdom, so that we will be able to strive for the right thing in life and not be misled or missed out the immeasurable riches that God has predestined for us.
“for God loves nothing so much as the person who lives with Wisdom (Wis. 7:28). All good things came to [us] along with her (Wis. 7:11)”.