From last Friday: When we remember the kingdom of God is indeed God’s kingdom, we are more likely to do His will, give Him praise and adapt to trials over which we have no control. The Lord will guard our hearts against the footholds of pride and independence, and teach us to watch for His hand in everything.
This doesn’t mean we should stand by passively as we wait for God to tell us what to do. This would be a mistake in two regards. First, Jesus’ teaching is packed with action words such as “go”, “give”, “love”, “forgive”, and “pray.” Our decision to follow Jesus instantly enrolls us in a general daily agenda.
In the city of Jericho Jesus went to the home of a corrupt tax-collector by the name of Zacchaeus. Everyone in town was shocked to see someone like Jesus visit a notorious sinner. We don’t have a record of everything that was discussed, but we know Zacchaeus responded by promising to give half of his wealth to the poor and repay the people he had cheated fourfold. Jesus stood up and said, “Today, salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham” (Luke 19:9). As far as Zacchaeus was concerned, following Jesus was synonymous with serving Jesus.
The second reason we shouldn’t merely wait for God’s direction is because, individually, we are redeemed kingdom pieces in motion. God is making us into the people He needs us to be as His Holy Spirit transforms us from the inside out. The Apostle Peter wrote, “As you come to him, the living Stone–rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him–you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:4-5). Our new relationship with God is a daily process in which He fills us with love and grace and shows us how to live together with other kingdom citizens.
Therefore, we are the kingdom of God. The Father’s reign extends to our personal borders, and He is working through us to storm the gates of hell everywhere we go. Yet He can only use us when we take our citizenship seriously and pursue His vision. We pray, “Our Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is heaven.” May it be so, as we live for Him.