Saturday, October 31, 2009
He told them another parable. “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened.” Matthew 13:33
There is something magnificent about Halloween. So many people associate evil, bad spirits and the like with Halloween, despite the fact that it is simply the day before All Saints' Day, when we celebrate those who have gone before us. Halloween in the U.S. is a wonderfully fun holiday, when children who are kept from the presence of strangers, go door to door demanding candy from strangers. Children who are told what to do get to dress up and spend a few hours full of themselves and full of treats. Occasionally bad things have happened on Halloween but in the adults work overtime to keep the kids safe while the children work overtime to run amok and delight in the outfit and the occasion. Kids get to be kids and adults enjoy them completely - or at least most adults do. After being in a costume shop the other day, I can also say that many adults like dressing up and acting like kids for a few hours too.
Jesus talks about the kingdom of heaven being like a mustard seed and like yeast - life abundant from the smallest of sources. Love and joy breaking forth from tiny people and unexpected places. This Halloween, I want to remember how it felt to be a child all those years ago. How impossible it seemed that I would grow up and contribute anything to society, let alone have the pleasure to be someone's mom. I felt so useless and unlikely most of my growing years.And yet, God uses us all with the gifts we have been given. May we rejoice this day in the small pleasures we have enjoying our children this night. And may we remember that the small kindnesses we show today may be used by God to bring great life and joy to others. The kingdom of God is demonstrated by all the saints living now or in the fullness of God's presence.