Here’s a question to ponder: What is the Kingdom of God?
I love that line of the Psalm… But looking around the world today I would say we’re doing a lot of sowing at the moment and not a lot of singing with joy.
I think I’d be a good atheist. I’d be vehemently anti-religion and I would believe that needing a God in order to do good in the world was archaic thinking. I’d accuse religion of suppressing woman and manipulating people with propaganda and fear. I’d look around the world and say, “How do you believe this God stuff when there is no evidence of His existence. Children die, catastrophes strike, where is God?”
But I am not an atheist. So perhaps I am just a bad Christian.
So where is God?
You know, God asked Himself the same question. My God. My God, why have you forsaken me?
As a Catholic, over time my understanding of Christianity has evolved. I’ve come to believe that Christianity is not a “belief system”, it is a way of life. The most radical way of life there is.
It is not about devotion or piety, because those things are meaningless without love.
In the Church there seem to be two ways of thinking when it comes to “The Kingdom of God”.
There is the idea that the world is shot and it’s going down in flames and so we better batten down the hatches and hold on tight and hope we make it through the other side when Jesus comes back.
But that doesn’t fly with me. The reason is, yes, the world is a mess, God may seem to be absent to us but Jesus gave us a mission to “go and make disciples of all nations.” He also said, “The Kingdom of God is within you.”
Why would Jesus give us a mission if it were an impossible one to begin with? If that was the case he would’ve said, “Okay listen guys, go and make disciples of all nations. I will be with you until the end of the age… not!”
Christian’s believe that Christ has conquered death and evil and we believe that when He returns He will set all things right but I like to build on that and say Christ wants us to bring His kingdom now. To go out into the fringes of society and love.
There is no point sitting around, claiming righteousness and waiting for the end. That’s like sitting on the nose of a plane as it heads for the ground when you actually know how to fly the plane.
We have been sent and that is why I have hope for the world. I believe that we don’t have to wait for the fireballs to start falling from the sky to say “at last God is sorting this mess out.” If we do that, He’ll step out of a cloud and ask, “Um, what did you guys do while I was away?”
Instead He has given us everything we need and more to change the world and to bring peace on earth.
He’s the exasperated parent who bought his kid all the new running gear and then when the clapper goes at the start line the child bursts into tears and sits down. He loves us anyway but it’s a bit of a waste!
So I believe we shall reap in songs of joy. The world will be okay. We will all be okay.
It will hurt,it will take sacrifice, it will be very uncomfortable but I really and truly believe it is possible because God has tasked us with making it so because even when we are faithless He is faithful because He cannot deny Himself (2 Timothy 2:13) .