"One Day" by Vicar A.J. Houseman
Updated: Aug 4
So I’m at that age where many of my friends are starting to have kids. When I open my Facebook my timeline is like baby after baby after baby. It’s beautiful. I do not have kids yet, but my brother has 3 kids. I remember meeting my nephew for the first time and how my heart warmed to meet this new little life. This beautiful little baby who has all these hopes and dreams put on him. A baby where I could see my own likeness in him for the first time. I remember thinking, “This is it, this is what I’m working for. His future.” The future for my nephew and my nieces, for all my friends’ children. The future of Judi’s new baby granddaughter. So new and with so many hopes and dreams.
On August 28th, 1963, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. and you guys know it. Those famous words, “I have a dream…” One of the dreams he declared that day was, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”
I, too, have a dream for the future that is made for our children. Every parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle looks at these little children and hopes for one day.
As Jesus tells the disciples “the kingdom of heaven will be like…” I can’t help but to think of the famous words of Dr. King. Jesus lays out for them the “one days.” It is like a treasure. It is like a fine pearl. It is like fish of every kind all together. One day.
Oftentimes in Christianity we spend so much time thinking about this treasured heaven. About what comes next. And I’ll cut to the grace punchline early, Jesus is the way and he has already paved it for us. He has already come to bring this gift of God to Earth. Amen to that.
But what Jesus spends much of his time trying to explain to the disciples and explain to the crowds over and over again is the “one day”. The days ahead. The days that the kingdom comes. Here.
You know the things: feed the poor, clothe the naked, take care of the widow and the orphan, share the good news… leave the place better than you found it.
He doesn’t offer these things up as a task list to get into heaven. He has already taken care of that on the cross. He gives us the way to get to our “one day.”
The yeast, it has to be mixed, folded, and kneaded into every part of the flour for it all to rise. The kingdom of heaven is mixed into every fiber of our world, until all rise together.
The seed has to be tended, nurtured, and grown until it provides shelter and a home to all.
This one day is something you want so badly, you would give anything to make it for your kids. You would sell all you have, you would invest everything into this single pearl.
I have a dream that this kingdom of heaven is where one day all fish of every color, shape, size, sexual or gender identity are all caught up together and sorted by the content of their character, not judged by who they are.
As the children of God, Jesus’ dream for one day is for all of “we” children. He hopes that one day, no to be more clear, he KNOWS that one day this kingdom will come. Each and every day we continue to make it.
What is the kingdom like? The kingdom is like all children being valued for the content of their character. The kingdom is like all children growing up loved and without fear for their lives. The kingdom is everything deep down in your soul that you want for your children. For your children’s children.
And what we do today should be in service to this “one day”. I serve God each and every day for this. I stand here before you today for this. I recycle for this. For my friends’ children. For my brother’s children. For your children. And for mine some day.
2020 has probably not been everyone’s favorite year so far. It’s been a scary one, a confusing one, a divisive one… And yet, ask any new parent, any new grandparent, any expecting parent, and they will tell you: there’s hope. Hope for the one day.
There have been other years that weren’t awesome, right? Times when our country was divided, times when disasters struck and families and communities were torn apart, times when big plagues of illness had everyone terrified in their homes. And our parents, our parents’ parents, and their parents’ parents fought for the “one day.” They prayed, they marched, and they rebuilt, for us. For their hope, their “one day’.
Take just a moment: When you envision the world that you would like to see one day, what does it look like?
When you think of the place that you would like to prepare for your children or your children’s children, what does it look like?
This, friends, is what the kingdom of heaven is. It is the place of our hopes and our dreams. The place that we hope one day will be here for our kids. So let’s dream of their future, let's pray for it, let's hope for it, and let's work for it.
So I have these questions for you to think and pray about this week:
What does the “one day” look like for you?
Who do you dream this “one day” for?
What can you do to help make this possible?
Hymn to accompany your reflection: