Today’s Scripture Selection: Matthew 13:44

“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field.  When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”

So often, when I hear people talk about the kingdom of God or the kingdom of heaven, it’s as if they think it is someplace far, far away – kind of like Oz.

And, though I wouldn’t begin to claim that I can fully explain what it is like – I believe in a pretty orthodox view of a “reign” of God somewhere out of sight, in the “heavenly places” just beyond the thin veil of the reality we experience.

But I also think the kingdom of heaven can be found in the here and now.  And that it is treasure indeed when we get at least some small glimpse of it.

I think that’s why Scripture speaks in such glowing terms about this aspect of our relationship with God.

We can throw around a lot of very lofty, or heavy, theological terms – depending on how you like to think of them:

  • Glorification
  • Sanctification
  • Redemption
  • Grace
  • Along with a whole library full of others like them.

But I kind of like this image of a treasure hidden in a field that a man sort of stumbles upon, and realizing his good fortune, gives up everything he has so that he can insure his permanent ownership of it.

Do we often think of our citizenship in the heavenly kingdom in such terms?

Treasure and kingdom – two words, put together, worth pondering.  Don’t you think?

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for loving us enough to invite us into your kingdom – a treasure in and of itself.  AMEN.

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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