What is the Kingdom of God like? Is it like a parallel universe?
In this week’s Gospel Jesus gives a description of the Kingdom. In the Kingdom, everything’s pretty much the same as the world we live in right now. You’re there. I’m there. You’re who you are, and I’m who I am – but there are incredible differences. In this world, the poor live terrible lives. And the hungry have no one to help them. In the Kingdom the poor and the hungry are blessed, and it is the rich who are sent away with empty hands and empty stomachs. In this world, those who mourn are just what we’d expect them to be: devastated and sad and bereft of hope. But, in the Kingdom, those who mourn are happy. In the Kingdom, tears are turned into dancing.
We get things wrong when we think of the Kingdom as coming at the end of time we should think of it as the world right next to us, a “parallel” universe, existing side-by-side our own. We can flip between these universes and the passport we have is our Baptism. Jesus said the Kingdom is already here. In that Kingdom, all the poor, the hungry, the sorrowful. and the powerless are all having a wonderful time. The more we care for the poor the more real the Kingdom will be for us. The more we feed the hungry, the more visible the Kingdom will be for us. To take this fantastic journey we’re going to need: a faith-fuelled imagination, a heart full of compassion, a spirit-filled readiness to share with those less fortunate than ourselves. The Kingdom isn’t the “next” world – unless we mean the world “right next to us”.
Let’s start making that Kingdom visible today.