Then Jesus said, “What is the Kingdom of God like? How can I illustrate it? It is like a tiny mustard seed that a man planted in a garden; it grows and becomes a tree, and the birds make nests in its branches.” He also asked, “What else is the Kingdom of God like? It is like the yeast a woman used in making bread. Even though she put only a little yeast in three measures of flour, it permeated every part of the dough.”(NLT)
It may seem strange to liken Christians to saboteurs. Such people are usually destructive, pursuing narrowly selfish goals at the expense of others. Yet those who follow Jesus are those who seek to extend his rule in a world which resists him though it rightly belongs to him.
Let C.S. Lewis express it: “This world is enemy occupied territory. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise. This king is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage.”
In other words, we are to be those who implement the prayer of Jesus: “Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” It is not being done as it should be, and we are the ones who try to change that state of affairs.
And as this reading reminds us, it might be slow and secret work. It may not be dramatic. Our power may seem miniscule compared to that of our opposition. But God’s rule will be extended bit by bit as we do our bit in emulating Jesus in the power of the Spirit. Till one day, the old order is overthrown and the saboteurs become triumphant.