“Jesus asked, ‘What is God’s kingdom like? To what can I compare it?'” (Luke 13:18)
While my sister was visiting, we went up to Boston. I lived in the greater Boston area for 9 years so definitely have a few favorite spots, with the North End being my favorite neighborhood in the city. We wanted to eat at Neptune Oyster and put in my name to get a table. It’s a tiny restaurant with the best lobster rolls around (hot with butter, of course!) And even though the hour plus wait isn’t ideal, it’s typical. So we made our way to the nearby Rose Kennedy Greenway to wait until the restaurant called.
It was that twilight time of the evening and the sun was setting. This urban park was full of life. There was a group of young women in their 20s who were getting ready to go out for the night. Children running together through the fountains with their shrieks of delight. Homeless folks on the grass and under trees setting up their beds for the night. Men playing frisbee with each other. People eating delicious desserts at some of the tables with their open Mike’s Pastry boxes catching the powdered sugar as it fell. A man and woman sitting on the bench next to my sister and me, the man smoking a cigar contentedly. A young girl in a flowing peach dress running through the grass as her mother was trying to take pictures and her father was patiently pulling her stroller.
I sat on that bench and observed people of many races. I heard various languages. I saw young and old, rich and poor. All of us were enjoying the evening in that Boston park together. And I couldn’t help but think—this, right here—this is what God’s Kingdom is like.
We checked the time and decided to make our way back to the restaurant. The quiet contemplation of this beautiful tapestry of humanity was broken for the moment. Though one of the young men throwing the frisbee smiled broadly at us as we left the park, “Have a nice night!” “You too!” And even though we didn’t even know each other’s names or anything about one another, the sentiment of wishing one another well in that moment of time and in that peaceful place was sincere. Yes, this is the Kingdom of God.
(This Week’s Thoughts 8.1.19)