“The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all and buys that field”

Matthew 13:44

Tuesday, 14 July 2020

Matthew 13:44

In the unsettling conditions of Palestine in Jesus’ time, it was not unusual to guard valuables by burying them in the ground. We all do that. We protect our valuables and, if we think necessary, hide them for safekeeping.

The parable invites us not to let opportunities slip past. Sometimes we wait for years for a word or a person or a sign that could give new meaning or focus to our lives. Sometimes we eventually find what we desire. Sometimes, like the person in Matthew’s Gospel, we stumble across a treasure that we did not know about. But all of these are focussed on people or things around us.

There is another place we are invited to find treasure: within ourselves.

We are moulded by a culture that, so often, wants us to believe that value is somewhere outside of us. We are tempted to believe that the brand we wear or the social group we associate with determines our worth. This is untrue. Sometimes we want to define ourselves by what has happened to us in the past – hurts, tragedies or failures. We think we are defined by the bad things that have happened to us; we might even cling to them.

We are invited to discover the treasure that God has buried in our hearts. God has gifted each person with an ability or a talent. We may find this hard to believe. Sometimes we even deny that we are gifted. Notice how the treasure was in the field long before the person stumbled across it. We are invited to dig in the field of our hearts to discover what the Lord has buried there: a treasure that may well open new opportunities and pathways to us.

Take some time today to become conscious of the gifts that God has given you. What gifts do you need from God at this time? Might there be treasure buried in the field of your heart that you need to go digging for now?

Lord God,
Please help me to see myself as you see me. You have made me in your image and likeness and have placed treasure in the field of my heart. Grace me with the ability to dig up that treasure and use it well. Help me to see myself as a gift to the world

Fr Russell Pollitt SJ

Fr Russell Pollitt SJ is the Director of the Jesuit Institute and is interested in the impact that communications technology has on society and spirituality. He regularly comments on South African Politics and various issues in the Catholic Church.

director@jesuitinstitute.org.za @rpollittsj
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