Posts Tagged ‘Kingdom of God’

Isaiah 42:14-21

When God moves, we tell each other
It blesses our hearts straight through
You can see people raise hands in worship
And know He’s starting something New

The quiet might get all revved up
The mute may shout “Amen!”
Then we will go home and wait
For God to show up again.

But Isaiah reminds us
When God is truly on the move
He will not hide the evidence
And there will be no need to prove

He lays waste to mountains
And dries up all the pools
He takes all human wisdom
And makes them look like fools

What used to seem like darkness
Becomes a light to guide
There will not be any secret place
That is safe enough to hide

Those who trust in man-made things
Or find their peace in self
Recognize how blind you are
And how pitiful – your wealth.

Compared to what God is doing
And invites us to join His song,
He’s given us His Spirit
And all Heaven sings along…

1 Samuel 15:22-31

Does God desire great sacrifice
From those who don’t obey?
Is a burnt offering greater
Than doing what He might say?

King Saul felt repentant
For choices that he made.
But was his heart repentant
Or was he just afraid?

Afraid of losing status
In the minds of those he rules.
Afraid of being humbled
And cast among the fools.

He seems to seek the comfort
Of having Samuel near-
Tearing the prophets’ garment
But not seeming to shed a tear.

When we come to worship
Are we seeking the presence of God?
Or have we become content to seek
An enthusiastic facade?

Saul worshiped the God of Samuel
But never took God as His own
Which is why God looks to Jesse next
For someone to fill the throne.

Snails & Rose-Tree’s

During bedtime prayers tonight, I read our girls the story from Hans Christian Andersen, “The Snail & the Briar” (which apparently most people call “The Snail & the Rose-Tree”).  I’d never read this one before, and really loved one section enough that I wanted to share it.  The snail is teasing the rose-tree a bit, for never doing anything other than producing roses year after year.  The snail is a bit of a cynic, retreating into himself introspectively, always telling himself that the time or moment of his realization of self in some important way is on the horizon.

In one conversation, the snail straight up confronts the rose-tree: “Have you even thought about why you do it?  Why keep blossoming, and not do something else?”IMG_0154

To this, the rose tree replies: “No…I blossomed with joy – I just could not help myself.  The sun shone so warmly, the air blew so freshly, I drank clear dew and heavy rain, I breathed and lived!  Strength seeped into me from the soil and also filled me from above.  I felt happiness, for ever new and for ever greater, and that is why I kept on blossoming.  That was my life, I could not do otherwise!”

I loved this, especially in the context of parenting my daughters to bear the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5).  That we would help arrange the conditions of sun, air, water, etc. to the point that when people ask my kids why and how they continue to bear fruit for the Kingdom, they simply say “That’s who I am!”

This is our role, church.  May we fill our world with the love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control flowing from a life connected to the vine (John 15:5).  Not so that we look good, or nice, or “Christian-y”.  But so that our children (read HIS children, including all the kids on our block, in our community’s schools, and those feeling overlooked today) have the nurturing conditions necessary for fruit-bearing in beautiful ways.

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