Wednesday, August 5, 2015
What If We Really Expected the Kingdom to Come?
If you grew up in church, you probably skipped over that. (Caught you!) It's ok. I would have too. Maybe try reading it nice and slow.
There is so much crazy stuff packed into this, but I've been focused so heavily on one phrase recently.
Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
The Message (which is translated phrase by phrase to communicate the tone of the text as it was intended) says this:
Reveal who you are. Set the world right; Do what’s best— as above, so below.
Jesus told us to pray and ask God to reveal Himself to us. He told us to ask God to make the world the same here as it is "above" in heaven.
Do we even know what we're saying when we pray that? We are asking that the Kingdom of God (real live Heaven) would come down and be as real here as it is in heaven. What would that look like?
I think it would look incredibly different from what we're seeing in churches right now. There would be so much more love. So much more joy. We would not look down on people because we would see that we are just as filthy as they are. We would know each other completely, and share every part of our lives with each other instead of putting on a show.
We would worship in truth by being honest in worship instead of following the crowd or the screen. We would worship in spirit by allowing the Holy Spirit to move our hearts and even move our bodies and hands and voices to sing and speak praises and prayers and to go to people to love them. We would be filled with love for the poor and needy. We would believe in real healing in impossible circumstances, and we would see it happen. We would believe in the absolute providence of God.
We would not worry. We would not gossip. We would not slander. We would love intensely. We would not stop church (which is so sorely mistaken for a building) just because the pastor dismissed us. We would want more and more of the Holy Spirit in every moment.
We would want our work lives to be filled with praises and joy and love and Jesus no differently than we want church to be filled with that. We would be bold about speaking the name of Jesus to people who don't necessarily know him because we care what Jesus thinks, not ANYONE else. We would pray for people boldly and we would pray alone boldly. We would long with an insatiable thirst for more glory to belong to our King.
I'm no theologian, and there is so much more to this. Heaven is more than we could ever think of or imagine. It's more than we can comprehend. It's not something our brains can contain. I want as much of it as I can get!
I challenge you and I'm challenging myself to start bringing the Kingdom of Heaven to earth everyday. Let's start by simply praying that it would come and we would have eyes to see it and a heart to welcome it especially when it's not what we expect it to be.