"The kingdom of heaven is like leaven"

I've been thinking about these parables of Jesus:

"The kingdom of heaven is like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened." (Mt 13.33)

"The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed upon the ground, and should sleep and rise night and day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he knows not how." (Mk 4.26-27)

We like to promote God's kingdom (or God's purposes) on the grand scale, with lots of people and lots of resources so we can show big results. But Jesus describes the kingdom as "hidden," or even underground (like a seed). Working and growing at the smallest level, even too small for us to see, so that only the cumulative effect is noticeable and we can't understand how this effect happened.

These parables reinforce my conviction that the kingdom of God works and grows at the personal level, not at the level of organizations or institutions. The seed's sprouting and growth occurs on an individual level. The leavening happens between the smallest particles, in the relationships between persons. And though we "know not how" this contributes to the overall reality and impact of God's kingdom, this is the level on which we are to grow and work.

I'm trying to work this way here. I've been concerned about recent plans to open a store to sell Amish furniture and quilts and also some artwork, and to have the interns work in the store. It seems to me a money-making venture much more than a service to the community. And I can't see much value in having interns spending their time selling high-priced furniture and art to wealthy customers. But I've tried to challenge this on the personal level, talking with people I know in the community and the interns themselves, rather than appealing to leadership (who came up with the idea and are pushing it). I just hope some people can see this is not a spiritually beneficial direction to be moving.

And isn't this the way Jesus appealed to people? He didn't go to the leaders but to the people themselves, not trying to influence a group en masse but appealing to each person. Because it is the person who Jesus is interested in above all.