In her book John Paul the Great, Peggy Noonan offers some fascinating thoughts about life in the Kingdom of God, as she reflects on the Mysteries of the Rosary, specifically the Sorrowful Mystery of Christ's suffering. She reflects upon all the things that must have been going in the mind of Christ on the night he was betrayed.
"And he must have loved life. He must have been in love with life on earth. He must have wanted to grow old. He knew of heaven, and yet he wanted to stay here. Did he love the taste of bread, the sound of the animals on the hills? He must have liked being a carpenter's apprentice. In woodworking you can see the results of your labor, you can touch it, you can feel its smooth finish."
"I can't stop thinking about Christ, and his desire to live. What I think of when I think about it is the composer and performer Warren Zevon. Like the pope, he was a philosopher, though I don't suppose he would have thought of himself that way. He said something very true about like on earth though, and it is worth more than gold or diamonds.
When he was dying of lung cancer, in the autumn of 2002, Zevon did an hour-long interview with David Letterman. Letterman asked, "From your perspective now, do you know something about life and death that maybe I don't know?" And Zevon famously replied, "I know how much your supposed to enjoy every sandwich."
He knew how wonderful and delicious that smallest parts of daily life are. He knew wonderful and delicious a day in your life, or an hour of that day, or this minute is.
We're lucky to be here. And now when I think of friends and family and those I love, or those I'm just getting to know, I think, "He knows how good the sandwich is." Or "She doesn't know how good the sandwich is yet". But its good to know. More fun too."
As I read these words, I thought to myself, "YES! Peggy Noonan gets it - she understands a bit of the Kingdom of God as I have experienced it too!"
I say, lets make a really big sandwich, with all the trimmings, and lets share it - with the whole world!