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Kingdom in the Commonplace

He (Jesus) told another parable to them: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that someone took and planted in his field. It’s the smallest of all seeds. But when it’s grown, it’s the largest of all vegetable plants. It becomes a tree so that the birds in the sky come and nest in its branches.” Luke 13:31-32 CEB

Throughout the New Testament we read Jesus trying to explain to the people, his followers, the bystanders, what this Kingdom was all about. Tell us about this kingdom, Jesus. So, Jesus picks up a handful of mustard seeds and says, “The kingdom is like a mustard seed…”

Mustard Seed? What is he talking about? Why doesn’t Jesus tell us exactly what this kingdom is all about? Why does he keep using parables and metaphors?

But the ironic thing about it, is that Jesus was telling them, and is telling us about the kingdom of God. It is not something we can grasp and get our fingers around. For you see the kingdom does not have political boundaries, it is not ushered in with military might. The Kingdom of God is not like any kingdom we have read about in history books or exist in the world today. For it is not a kingdom that is confined to a specific group of people within a specific territory or within a certain time period.

The Kingdom of God is simply wherever and whenever God’s rule is supreme. It is wherever love of God is foremost, His mercy, and compassion. Where perfect justice exists, God’s flawless justice. It is wherever people take a stand against the things that rule society, the callousness, the insensitivity, the hate, the spitefulness, the immorality, the materialism. Yet it is wherever people humble themselves to let God reign in their lives. So that this world can be what God created this world to be, a blessing. The kingdom is not yet complete, but we can see pockets of it all around us.

One of my favorite quotes is from Mother Teresa. She said that we can do no great things in life, only small things with great love. The strength of God’s love in our lives can change the ordinary and commonplace to powerful vessels of transformation in our world. The strength of God’s love can change ordinary and common people to perform powerful deeds in bringing about God’s kingdom in this world. We can find the kingdom in the commonplace.


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