We are up in the mountains above Estes Park, Colorado along with some friends examining the Sermon on the Mount and how we can walk it out in our lives.
I love the Sermon on the Mount. When I turned back to God in April of 2010, the Sermon on the Mount became one of my daily reading passages. For a little more than a year, I read this passage (Matthew 5-7) each day. Now I read it twice a week. Lately, in preparation for this retreat, and for our Wednesday night prayer class, I’ve been digging a bit deeper into the Sermon on the Mount.
Volumes have been (and will be) written on the topic, and I don’t want or intend to add to those at this time, yet would like to share an observation on this concept of the Kingdom of God.
This phrase (or it’s companion–the Kingdom of Heaven) appears some 140 times throughout Gospel. Jesus talked about the Kingdom of Heaven A LOT. Trying to get His followers to understand that He didn’t come to over-throw the Romans, rather came to establish a new Kingdom all together.
The Kingdom of Heaven is like.
We talked, at great length, about this concept in our prayer class at Acts 2 UMC this past Wednesday. What does this Kingdom–that is altogether other–look like in our world today.
As we discussed this concept, and over the last few days since, I have come to a better–yet still lacking–understanding.
One perspective of the Kingdom of God that was presented was that the Kingdom of God is where what God wants done is done.
Another prespective was where there is Shalom instead of broken Shalom.
Finally, Rick Warren’s comparison between the Kingdom of God and surfing was mentioned. He says that you can’t know the Kingdom by just sitting and waiting for it, just as a surfer can’t surf the wave by sitting on the beach.
As I’ve prayed, thought, and read about this concept, I keep coming back to the Kingdom of God being where you can see that God has been at work, and has brought order into chaos.
Often, we don’t see this while in the midst of the situation. We don’t see God’s hand at work. We don’t see God’s movement in the silence or the chaos. Yet, when out of the situation and we look back, it is clear that Kingdom has come to a particular situation. What God wanted done was done. Shalom has been restored. Order has come out of choas.
Be encouraged. While it may still look like chaos, while it may be unclear if or how God is on the move, be encouraged. In the end, as you look back, it will be clear.
The Kingdom is at Hand!