“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.
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Find a treasure? Buy the whole field. Find a great pearl? Sell all the lesser ones to own it. Fish with a net? Catch all the fish and sort out the good ones. We all know the phrase "you take the bad with the good." The goal is getting what is good. The task is sorting. The method is inefficient on the front end because it means taking the risk, not diversifying, and having to do the work of sorting out the bad and the good. These are the stories used by Jesus to paint a picture of the nature of the Kingdom of God. It works because the one doing the sorting determines the value. We arrogantly think we have the final say in such matters of right and wrong, good and bad. We massage the definition to suit our purposes at the time. If ever there was a time when this was most apparent, it is now. But were we to put ourselves in the place of the treasure, the great pearl, or the fish would we trust the current fluctuating market rates to determine our value. Or would we rather hope for the One who declares something hidden - a treasure, something ordinary - great, something caught - worth keeping?
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I am no treasure, Lord. I am not greater than other pearls. I am one of many fish. I leave the value of my life in the Kingdom entirely up to you. Amen.