From: Megan Pinckard
“What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden, and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.”
Jesus knew what he was doing.
He knew that most of the Jews were farmers, intimate with the ins and outs of husbandry. And he knew that at the mention of mustard seeds, the Jews likely shuffled their feet and mumbled curses under their breath.
The kingdom of God is like a pest, Jesus was saying. Mustard seeds were the gardener’s bane. Like biblical kudzu, the mustard plant would spread and steal over the other plants. But they were not magnificent. These were not tall, oversweeping things. Mustard plants spread outwards a great deal, but only upwards of a few feet.
The kingdom of God is not what you’d expect, Jesus said. The kingdom of God is powerful but unwanted. Who could belong there? The birds of the air—birds of prey. Vultures. The kingdom is for the least of these.
And we who flock to the gospel are so highly favored in this low but overgrown kingdom. May we encourage it to spread. May we plant seeds wherever we go, and wherever we ourselves land, help them grow.
My job is to use other peoples’ money to buy books and toys. It’s not so bad.