Wednesday 2 August 2023
St Eusebius of Vercelli; St Peter Julian Eymard
Exodus 34:29-35. Holy is the Lord our God – Psalm 98(99):5-7, 9. Matthew 13:44-46.
A journey towards humility
There is a famous painting by Giambattista Tieplo called The Banquet of Cleopatra. Never mind the fascinating story of how this enormous work, painted in the middle of the 18th century, ended up in the National Gallery of Victoria. You’d need a house the size of Bunnings if you owned it. At the centre Cleopatra is about to drop a priceless pearl into a flute of champagne where, of course, the alcohol will dissolve it, like aspirin in water. Her gesture is one of wealth and power. She is portrayed as the centre of the world. If you wanted to represent everything Jesus is not talking about today, this image would be good.
The kingdom of God is not something any of us can own. It is the kind of pearl or treasure for which we need to keep looking. There is no such thing as an arrogant Christian. We are all on a journey towards ever deeper humility.