Saturday, 13 October 2007
I have been going to Belfast Bible College to do a module on The Lord's Prayer. All sounds pretty "christiany" but to be honest the guy who takes it (Desi Maxwell) has the most open minded view of the Kingdom of God that I have heard in a while. Its refreshing.
The kingdom of God is different from any other kingdom. The powerful, political kingdoms on earth may be impressive but when you think about it they are under our human control. We have to be in charge on an individual and corporate level. Its up to us how much we grow.
The kingdom of God is much less definable, it is inclusive and it is under the control of the highest power that exists...yet status is not a prerequisite.
In Mark there is a story about a guy that goes out to sow seed.
"This is what the kingdom of God is like: A man scatters seed on the ground. Night or day whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows. HE DOES NOT KNOW HOW.
ALL BY ITSELF THE SOIL PRODUCES GRAIN. First the stalk, then the head and then the full kernel. As soon as it is ripe he puts the sickle into it, because the harvest has come.
In the world we look for spectacular. Yet in a world plentiful in information we lack awe and wonder at the simple things. The spectacular miracles of God are in the every day things and people that we walk past without a second thought. The kingdom asks you to think twice.
The bread on your table is a miracle.
It was a seed, somehow all by itself it grew, it was harvested, it was made into flour, it sits on your table and it sustains you. The problem is we have never had to be without it so the miracle in the story can be less inviting to our senses compared to our big mac and fries....same concept of the grain and soil there too by the way.
We live in the miracle of God...life. We are not in control of how the seed grows. I try to remind myself of this in the hospital. I try my best for people, I try to use my head and my heart to help people but at the end of the day I am not in control..."all by themselves they grow" just like the seed. They grow sicker sometimes but I have to realise its not in any ones hands.
My knowledge is the slightest scratch on the surface of what is really happening inside people. God only knows!
But I am there with my hands stretched out scattering seeds of hope. I am willing to stick the sickle in and work hard but at the end of the day other forces push the seed up from the soil.
Lets start laying hold of the miracles around us. Lets lay hold of God in our situations. A guy cried with me the other day and said " I have no hope, I have wasted my life with drink". I told him that there was always hope, that there was always a second chance.
The kingdom asks you to take a second glance at what the world takes for granted, throws in the rubbish tip even. Life tells this guy he is a looser but Jesus fundamentally disagrees and so do I, if I don't I have big questions to ask myself! I stuck my hand in the bag and scattered seed. Thing is I have to leave it, pray for it and nurture it but ultimately realise....I have no control over how it goes or grows from there.