Week 3

Pearls of Commitment


This week’s short parable is about the kingdom of heaven.  However, it doesn’t answer questions about the kingdom, but asks challenging questions of us:  What truly matters in life?  How do we know when we find what truly matters?  How committed are we to giving up all to receive what matters most?

Remember, though, that the parables—even a short one like this—can have a twist!  What if this is a story about the King of the kingdom of heaven?  What if he is the one searching for pearls?  What if WE are the pearls?  Through this understanding of the parable, our challenge is to recognize just how committed God is to searching for and finding us.

Either way we look at it, this is a parable about abundant value and commitment to that abundance!


Jesus said, “The kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.  — Matthew 13:45-46


  • Reflect on this week’s scripture.  Are there any words or ideas that especially resonate with you or challenge you?  Are there other twists to this parable that you see?

  • Read this parable imagining yourself to be the merchant.  You will need to read slowly and probably several times to really put yourself into the story. Imagine what it’s been like to be in the business of “pearl searching.”  What’s it like to find that one pearl you’ve been searching for your whole life?  How do you know that this pearl is of “great value”?
    Imagine letting go of all you have so that pearl can be yours.

  • Read the parable again, this time imagining yourself to be the pearl.  What’s it like waiting to be found?  Imagine having Jesus, the pearl merchant, find you.   Reflect on how he sees YOU as his pearl of great value.

The pearl merchant is committed to seeking and finding the pearl.  This story challenges us to consider our commitment to seeking and finding the kingdom of heaven.  Make a list of what is life-giving for you and what is not. (You might want to look back at Week 2 and the obstacles that kept the good seed from growing well.)  To grow your commitment to finding the pearl of great price evaluate the life-giving and the life-depleting things on your list.  What could you keep and maybe do more of to grow more commitment to your faith?  What could you let go of or at least lessen in your life that lessens your commitment? 

This Week's Prayer:

God of joy,

Your Kingdom is my pearl of great value,

and I am your treasured pearl.

Grow my commitment to you.

Grow my awareness of your commitment to me.