By Fr. Roy Cimagala
CHRIST said it clearly. To pursue the kingdom of God, we should be willing to rid ourselves of things that can cause us some drag in that effort, or to sell off what we have at the moment to get the real thing.
Thus, he said: “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 that he has and buys that field.” Reiterating the same idea, he continued to say, “Again, the Kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it.” (Mt 13,44-46)
There will always be some sacrifice involved in pursuing our ultimate goal which is to be with God, our Creator, in whose image and likeness we have been created, and in whose life we are meant to share. In this regard, let’s try to be generous, not sparing in our effort. It’s all worth it!
We have to be wary of our tendency to get attached and trapped in the things of this world at the expense of our real treasure. We have to remember that it is actually the best deal we can have to “sell off” what we have in this world to be able to get the real thing.
Some words of Christ can be relevant in this regard. He said: “Everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for the sake of My name will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life.” (Mt 19,29)
All these Christ-dictated indications do not mean that we have to hate the things of this world. The things of this world are also God’s creation and therefore are good. God created them in such a way that they become pathways for us to go to God. They too deserve to be loved in a certain way. They are means to get to God, and not the end itself. Thus, we should be careful not to get entangled with them.
How important therefore that we realize that our first priority should be God and our relationship with him which should be sustained with the constant effort to know, love and serve him! We should be ready to throw away everything else that can stand in the way.
We have to make some adjustments in the way we order our objective needs. We have to distinguish them from our subjective likes and desires that can only be the product of some personal or social preferences. In this we have to employ the appropriate means, the relevant programs and operations. We should be demanding on ourselves insofar as this matter is concerned.
We have to do some drastic effort here because we cannot deny that nowadays, there are just too many things that can seduce us and take us away from God.
We need God first of all, and, in fact, all the time. He is our most important objective need, much more and infinitely more than we need air, food, rest, pleasures, etc. For without God, we are nothing. But with him, we can have everything. That is why, St. Teresa Avila boldly said: “He who has God lacks nothing. God alone is sufficient.”