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19th Sunday of Ordinary Time (Ages 3-6): Listening for the Treasure

(Adults, the Gospel for this Sunday is quite long and involves concepts young children are not ready for yet! Here we look instead at the first verses of the reading, which, when we think about it, encapsulate the whole.)

Jesus knows so much about the Kingdom of God. He spends a lot of time talking about it; we know it is important to him. Jesus wants us to know Kingdom of God, too. He says the Kingdom of God is like treasure that someone finds hidden in a field.

Like hidden treasure?? How exciting! How special the Kingdom of God must be! We wonder if we can find it, too.

In the Gospel for this Sunday, Jesus gives us an answer to our wonderings.

He says,

Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

Jesus does not want us to be afraid. Good. We do not like being afraid.

Jesus says it is God's good pleasure—the thing that God loves most—to give us the Kingdom. That is good news! God wants the treasure to be found.

But why does Jesus call us "little flock"?

A flock is a group of sheep. We are not a group of sheep, are we?

Maybe Jesus is thinking of his sheep—the sheep of the Good Shepherd.

Maybe the sheep of the Good Shepherd will help us understand more about the Kingdom of God.

Do the sheep of the Good Shepherd have the Kingdom of God? Do they have the treasure? That is a new thought.

What do we know? We hear in the Bible,

"The Lord is my Shepherd, I have everything I need."

The sheep have the Good Shepherd.

They have everything they need.

How special this is. They love each other. What a treasure!


Oh, of course! The sheep have the Kingdom of God!

The sheep have the treasure.

Jesus says,

where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

What does this mean?

Maybe the sheep can help us again.

The Good Shepherd calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.

The treasure knows their name. He calls them. He leads them.

The sheep follow because they know his voice.

Wherever he goes, they go. Where the Good Shepherd is, there are the sheep.

But how do they know where he is? How do they follow?

The sheep need to hear his voice. They must have to listen carefully.

They need their ears, don't they?

But Jesus says,

where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Maybe the sheep do not listen with their ears. Maybe they listen with their hearts.

Deep inside, they hear the voice of the Good Shepherd calling them by name.

They follow their heart to the treasure.

We remember that Jesus calls us his little flock. What do we hear if we listen with our hearts? What treasure will we find?

We are not afraid; we are full of joy!

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