Matthew 13: 44-52
"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure
hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then
in his joy he goes and sells all that he
has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven
is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on
finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold
all that he had and bought it. Again, the kingdom
of heaven is like a net that was thrown into
the sea and caught fish of every kind; when it
was full, they drew it ashore, sat down, and put
the good into baskets but threw out the bad. So
it will be at the end of the age. The
angels will come out and separate the evil from the
righteous and throw them into the furnace of fire, where
there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Have you
understood all this?" They answered, "Yes." And he said to
them, "Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the
kingdom of heaven is like the master of a household
who brings out of his treasure what is new and
what is old."
Introductory Prayer: Lord,
I come into your presence seeking to know you better.
I believe that you take the lead in seeking me.
You want me to find you. I trust that in
your mercy you will bring me to intimacy with you.
I open my heart today to receive your friendship.
Petition: Lord, help me to strive
for the for the Kingdom of heaven for myself and
1. The Treasure of the
Kingdom: “From the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks”
(Luke 6:45). Christ’s heart overflows with irrepressible zeal for the
Kingdom of heaven. He longs for everyone who hears him
to fall in love with that Kingdom. “His descriptions of
the Kingdom flow from his lips like water over a
waterfall — his vision is so rich and vibrant that
language itself can barely contain it” (Fr. John Bartunek, LC,
The Better Part, 184). At times we stumble upon the
Kingdom of heaven almost by accident, like the treasure in
the field. But we know that treasure is worth more
than all the earthly fields we can ever hope to
possess. Other times we make a long and diligent search
before encountering the Kingdom, like the pearl of great price.
Its beauty captivates our hearts.
The Joy of the Kingdom: Though the Kingdom of heaven
sparkles like a many-faceted gem, one feature always shines forth:
Discovering it fills the heart with joy. Have we ever
caught a glimpse of the Kingdom? It is there in
the ardent vigor of thousands of young people acclaiming Pope-Emeritus
Benedict at World Youth Day. It is there in the
reverent silence of a lone adorer in a Eucharistic chapel.
It is there in the enduring strength of present-day mothers
such as Saint Gianna Beretta Molla, who give up their
lives for their unborn children. The Kingdom of heaven is
worth everything and demands everything. Have we sold all we
possess in order to attain it? What still holds us
back? What earthly plots do we still cling to, fearing
to sell them for a treasure beyond what we dare
3. “Weeping and Gnashing
of Teeth”: The Kingdom of heaven is also like a
net thrown into the sea. Not all that the net
collects is worth keeping. So, too, not everyone enters into
the Kingdom. What a sudden contrast to the joy of
the Kingdom that pervades the first two images! Why does
Christ include this third and final description of the Kingdom?
He knows how easy it is for us to forget
the most important truths of our lives: the reality of
the last judgment, for which we should be preparing at
every moment. Christ knows that the stakes are high, and
we need to be reminded of them in order to
have the courage to sell everything to reach the Kingdom.
“The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell
and its eternity” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1035). Let
us continue to pray and sacrifice, so that one day
we and all the souls entrusted to us will arrive
to the eternal joys of the Kingdom of heaven.
Conversation with Christ: Lord, I want to be generous and
give up everything for the sake of your Kingdom in
my life and in the lives of those souls entrusted
to me. You know that I cannot do so on
my own. Help me with your grace to be generous.
Resolution: I will be open to
the inspirations of the Holy Spirit in responding to the
opportunities to bring someone closer to Christ’s Kingdom today.