Greetings fellow Network of Love Lovers!
Hope this post finds you enjoying your Thursday morning. After breakfast and a cup of coffee, I'm feeling pretty solid. (I'm trying to not think too much about impending research papers, term papers that need to be completed in the coming days---one of those days being tomorrow! It's only a rough draft...it will be rough).
This morning while sitting in the chapel here at my seminary college, I was reading a short reflection from a website www.staygreat.com. The content, written by Mark Link, a Jesuit author and priest, challenges readers in a very practical and simple manner to ponder a line or two from one of the Gospels. Link will generally quote a short passage and then offer a one or two paragraph reflection or story that in one way or another relates to the gospel reading. He will then ask a question and follow the question with a sort of universal truth or some kind of tidbit of wisdom. It is this latter section I want to talk a little bit about. Today, the passage Link had readers reflect on was from Luke's Gospel:
The coming of the kingdom of God cannot be observed..."The kingdom of God is among you." (Luke 17:20-21)
These were the words of wisdom Link wanted readers to think about after the end of the reflection:
"The greatest treasure isn't far, far away; it is closer to you than your own breath."
This got me thinking a little. In my opinion, its a very beautiful thing to ponder. Often times we think that the treasure or the life we are looking for is miles and miles away, way outside of where we are now. But these words will have us think otherwise.
God dwells within us AND all around us. God is, to quote the late great George Harrison, "within you and without you." The kingdom is an intimate, human, breathing treasure. And in that sense, since the kingdom of God sustains our life, it is closer to us than our own breath. The kingdom of God can give meaning to our breath, meaning to our every action, meaning to all of our loves, meaning to all of our moments. Recognizing that the kingdom of God really isn't some distant Shangri-La, but part of an inner peace can bring us among other people in a most intimate and real way. "The kingdom of God is AMONG you." We need not fear those trials we will inevitably face if we can somehow believe in this message.
Jesus tells us that we can't passively observe the coming of a kingdom. We must fully partake in the joys and sufferings inherent in the life of a human person. It is in understanding and contemplating our humanity that we are most intimate with a God who loves us more than we can imagine. The kingdom of God is at hand, dwelling among each and every one of us.
your friend bob.