"When anyone hears the word kingdom and understands it not..." was the lead-in used in Matthew 13:19 as Jesus framed the parable of the sower. Previously, he had offered these words, "Who has ears to hear, let him hear."
His own disciples, at least early on, were wondering why he spoke so many things in parables. What kingdom was he speaking and why?
I'm not sure that I fully understand his why behind that word "kingdom" having never lived under a monarchy.
Was it simply about institutional hierarchy, a cultural necessity, or a place we have to get to apart from our head, escaping our old self?
In the Christian religion, it is used so often that it can singularly frame our image of God to that of a King. Then, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, which further restricts our thoughts toward hierarchy alone, limiting the intimacy and essence of this One who is best described as Love.
I am not diminishing the omnipotence of God, only encouraging the reader to hear the great gulf between the concept of monarchy, which can quickly become militaristic, light years from words like "Father" or simply, friend.
In this chapter, the reader hears an array of descriptions and concepts that touch upon the word "kingdom" and from multiple angles, implying more than simply a throne.
Those hearing Jesus, wrestled with the "why" behind his parables, concepts such as seed and sower, good ground, tares, a mustard seed, "a treasure hidden in a field."
Perhaps the message was more about an internal epiphany, rather than some external place. Rather, a major paradigm shift necessary to move us from dependence upon human logic, freeing us to hear with spiritual ears.
We truly are spirits on a human journey, rather than humans on a spiritual journey. That should never be taken as trite!
My time evey morning is necessary in order to free my spiritual self from my human self. Without that, I am left to deal with my day dependent solely upon life's lessons, or worse yet, shear effort. Easily biased by the negative cacaphony of opinions that permeate this digital age.
Once apart from myself, I become open to ideation that flows across the galaxies, providence then becomes my schoolmaster, elevating my capacity and escalating my inventive self.
It's what enables a bird to respond to the seasons or a wild beast to suddenly and for the first time, care for young with no instruction. A mass of flesh slips from the womb in an open field, yet the mother knows to swiftly seperate her babe from its placental
She then suddenly takes on the nature of a protective, nourishing mother who knows immediately how to fit the young beast to her breast. A wild beast becomes as skilled and aware as a human mother. It's unreasonable to think this is simply chemistry and hormones!
Jesus in Matthew 13 is stretching his hearers, lifting us to a new understanding such that each of us become able to "bring forth out of his treasure things new and old."
Life truly is about Finding Your Kingdom Sweet Spot!