Friday, October 4, 2013
The Kingdom of God is Among You
Luke 17:21 nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There it is!’ For, in fact, the kingdom of God is among you.”
People waiting around and wondering about an earthly kingdom! This is what Jesus had to deal with on a regular basis. When was he going to overthrow the government? When was he going to make the current leadership change? The kingdom he was proclaiming had nothing to do with the earthly kingdoms of this world and everything to do with the kingdom of his Father. That kingdom had already arrived in the form of Jesus Christ. It was a new day, if only his followers and the religious leaders could open their eyes to see it!
I'm afraid that we may find ourselves squarely in the camp of the religious leaders and the disciples, wanting to change earthly kingdoms, in hopes of changing this world. The reality is that the hope for changing this world is already here -- in the midst of us. While Jesus is no longer present physically in the world, the Holy Spirit is, living through you and through me.
It is the presence of God in the world that brings about the kingdom. When God is living in us then the kingdom is already present in this world -- not through the control of earthly kingdoms, but by his intervention and interaction through you and me.
Once we are cognizant of the fact that the kingdom is moving through us, then we must pray that God leads us in intentional ways to act in this world. We are to be the kingdom of God for our world! For each one of us that may take different form, but we are to respond in obedience to the call to bring about the kingdom. As each one of us reflects the image of Jesus Christ, the world will begin to see more and more of God's kingdom. That kingdom will become more and more visible in the acts of mercy and justice done by the people who are living in the kingdom. Then the world will be able to see the kingdom, for they will know us by our love!
Look -- "the kingdom of God is among you."
Lord, please help me to serve you well in your kingdom. Amen.