2010-10-05 - Some Day He's Coming, O Glorious Day!
Originally Published 2001-02-01
The Lord's Prayer, Part 2
Matthew 6:9-13 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. Amen
"What do you want to be caught doing when Jesus shows up?" They looked at me, puzzled at first, and then their hands started raising as they understood what I had asked.
I was talking with the kids in my Sunday School Class. We've been discussing attitudes for the last several weeks. Everything that we do, everything that we are comes from the attitudes of our hearts. Our actions show what our hearts are like. My goal as a teacher is to show these kids the attitudes that Jesus would like to plant in them. But first, we need to identify the wrong attitudes and weed them out. It's my job to weed out of the corners of my heart what God shows me is wrong and then let Him replace the weed with a good plant to grow and be nurtured.
Back to my question. "Praying." "Reading my Bible." "Telling someone about Jesus". They had all kinds of "churchy" answers. I started laughing and said, "Those are great answers. I want to be 'caught' doing the same things, but do you know what I'll probably be doing? Giving a smart answer to someone because I'm angry with them. Or rolling my eyes and thinking inside, 'that that was really stupid!' Or something else totally wrong.
Their eyes flew open. Someone said, "yeah, me, too." Then they started thinking about what they would probably really be doing when Jesus showed up. Which was my goal all along. Silent prayer followed.
"Thy kingdom come."
Both in the Old Testament and the New, it's written over and over that God is going to bring His kingdom down to earth. Whether you believe that the church is going to be raptured (taken) before a 7-year tribulation, during a 7-year tribulation, or after a 7-year tribulation is totally irrelevant. God is going to bring His kingdom to earth and set up the reign of Christ as King of Kings.
Day by day, people go about living as if tomorrow is going to be just the same as today. We amass things around us as if that's all there is to life.
"Thy kingdom come."
We say it; do we mean it? Do we believe it? I don't think so. Not really. If I really believed that at any moment Jesus was going to show up -- no warning, just show up -- I would be living a whole lot differently. Guarding my tongue, being kind, loving my neighbor, praying, reading my Bible, giving, telling someone about Christ.
Thy kingdom come.
Father, deep in me, I want Your kingdom to come. I want You to rule over this earth. But, deep inside, I dont want You ruling over me. I dont want You changing me to conform to Your will. It hurts as those rotten areas come out. Yet I know that it is for my good and Your glory that You change me to conform to the image of Your precious Son, Jesus, Who gave Himself for me. I am so selfish. Please forgive me. Thank You for being so patient with me. Thank You that You are willing to show me (again) that corner that needs to be swept out. I want to be doing right when Jesus shows up. Thank You for showing me whats right. Amen.