At a hot and sunny midday, the pope reflected on Jesus’ parable of the merchant who finds “a pearl of great price.” He focused on the merchant’s actions of seeking, finding, and buying, and how they can teach us something today.
The first lesson is that the merchant is “enterprising,” Francis said. He is not complacent or satisfied by mediocrity but goes in search of precious pearls.
“This is an invitation for us not to close ourselves up in habit,” he said, but “to revive desire, so that the desire to seek, to go on, is not extinguished; to cultivate dreams of good, to seek the newness of the Lord.”
The merchant also knows how to recognize a pearl of great value when he sees one, the pope said, noting that this is not always easy.
“Let us think, for example, of the fascinating oriental bazaars, where the stalls, full of goods, are crowded along the walls of streets full of people; or of some of the stalls one sees in many cities, full of books and various objects,” he said. “Sometimes in these markets, if one stops to look closely, one can discover treasures: precious things, rare volumes that, mixed in with everything else, one does not notice at first glance.”
Pope Francis said the merchant knows how to discern the valuable pearl from the rest and then he buys it.