–Repost from June 2011
Your Kingdom Come
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Today I want the bright and sparkly, the deeply pure and right. I am groaning to be comforted, to hold my inheritance and to taste satisfaction. I want to see God.
What I have is friends who came and packed for me when I only felt like crying into empty boxes. And a friend who is bringing me dinner not because it is easy or she has nothing else to do, but because of Love. And a little tiny person who goes into full-body convulsions of joy upon seeing me. And a slightly bigger one who still thinks that the Bad Guy can be fought with punches. This is the kingdom coming from afar. Some days I can see it so clearly and some days my mind casts a dense fog.
For Thine is the kingdom
And the power
And the gloryForever and ever.
The heat of obedience is that we are trying to feel, see and bring the rule of God to earth precisely because it isn’t here. This absence sends me reeling almost every day. So if we pray as Jesus taught us we will be reminded that it isn’t ours to bring, only to ask for and watch for. I once read a commentary on the book of Job that had as its subtitle the phrase, “the triumph of impotence.” Throughout the book we hear a righteous and upright man beg for an audience with God, complain that God’s had is heavy on him, chase after a glimpse of God and refuse to buy into the small but tempting explanations of those around him. Strahan said that, “It is the chief distinction between Job and his friends that he desires to meet God and they do not.” The end of this story is that he does meet God and find contentment in the dust and ashes of the human condition. He finds triumph in impotence, in quietly trusting the God he’s been busy chasing the whole time. He doesn’t get answers; he gets God.
I have so many questions for God, mostly about what He isn’t doing, about why his will and rule seem landlocked in heaven. About why nothing we’re doing seems to work, about why obedience is so hard and we feel so powerless, so impotent.
For this impotence to display the triumph of God, I must keep going to God with the questions, with both the beginning and the ending of Jesus’ prayer. Chapter 23 is one of my favorite passages in the book of Job as he puts his foot down declaring that the darkness will not silent him—only God is worthy of the response of fear. When we crumble under life’s weight, we must fall to a bow.
Today also my complaint is bitter…
Oh, that I knew where I might find him,
that I might come even to his seat!
Behold, I go forward, but he is not there, and backward, but I do not perceive him;
on the left hand when he is working, I do not behold him;
he turns to the right hand, but I do not see him.
But he knows the way that I take;
when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.
My foot has held fast to his steps;
I have kept his way and have not turned aside.
I have not departed from the commandment of his lips;
I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my portion of food.
But he is unchangeable, and who can turn him back?
What he desires, that he does.
For he will complete what he appoints for me,
and many such things are in his mind.
Therefore I am terrified at his presence;
when I consider, I am in dread of him.
God has made my heart faint;
the Almighty has terrified me;
yet I am not silenced because of the darkness,
nor because thick darkness covers my face.
Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
It’s better to know God than to know everything else.
I say, “My endurance has perished;
so has my hope from the LORD.”…
But this I call to mind,
and therefore I have hope:
The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
“The LORD is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”
The LORD is good to those who wait for him,
to the soul who seeks him.
It is good that one should wait quietly
for the salvation of the LORD.
It is good to wait for the kingdom to come because it is his and he cannot fail to bring it. I wish it was today, but as Paul would tell me (and does)… what would be the point of hope then? It is good to wait.