“Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
This sentence is part of the Lord’s Prayer, so what does it mean for God’s kingdom to come to earth as it is in heaven? I learned that prayer as a child and have recited it many times but never really thought about what it meant. I wondered but never gave it much thought. Asking for God’s kingdom to come to earth, to come to our world the way it is in heaven? What does that mean and is it even possible?
The Amplified version of 1 Corinthians 13:12-13 puts it this way. “For now [in this time of imperfection] we see in a mirror dimly [a blurred reflection, a riddle, an enigma], but then [when the time of perfection comes we will see reality] face to face. Now I know in part [just in fragments], but then I will know fully, just as I have been fully known [by God].”
So in this fallen world as beautiful as it is, we only see and experience life as God intended with dim and blurred vision. This does not mean that life is dreary and dull and that we must simply survive one day at a time. Quite the contrary since God invites us to ask for his kingdom to come in the Lord’s prayer. I have a couple thoughts to share on what this may look like.
First of all I think God is speaking of close relationship built on faith, hope, and love. We can’t have that type of relationship with someone we don’t know well. That is why one of my passions is to share the true nature of God. If we have a false perception of who He is, there will be a lack of trust hindering closeness and intimacy. The Trinity is a hard concept for us to understand, I would even go as far as to say impossible to completely understand. I read something recently from a book called The Shack Revisited (Probably not the last you’ll hear references from this book) on the “trinitarian life.” The trinitarian life comes from the premise that we are all deeply loved, included and accepted by God even before we believe, which comes from the nature of a God of perfect love. A love that is not based on what we do or do not do, but based on his character. A character that goes after that one who is lost and never stops pursuing us to save us.
The author C. Baxter Kruger puts it this way:
“From all eternity, God is not alone and solitary, but lives as Father, Son, and Spirit in a rich and glorious fellowship of utter oneness. There is no emptiness in this circle, no depression or fear or insecurity. The trinitarian life is a great dance of unchained communion and intimacy, fired by passionate, self-giving, other-centered love and mutual delight. This life is unique, and it is good and right. It is full of music and joy, blessedness and peace. And this love, giving rise to such togetherness and fellowship and oneness, is the womb of the universe and of humanity within it. The stunning truth is that this triune God, in amazing and lavish love, determined to open the circle and share the trinitarian life with us...This is the one, eternal, and abiding reason for the creation of the world and of human life. There is no other God, no other will of God, no second plan, no hidden agenda for human beings. Before the creation of the world, the Father, Son, and Spirit set their love upon us and planned for us to share and know and experience the trinitarian life itself. To this end the cosmos was called into being, the human race was fashioned, and Adam and Eve were given a place in the coming of Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, in and through whom the dream of our adoption would be accomplished. Before Creation, it was decided that the Son would cross every chasm between the triune God and humanity and establish a real and abiding union with us. Jesus was predestined to be the mediator, the One in and through whom the very life of the triune God would enter human existence, and human existence would be lifted up to share in the trinitarian life.”
Simply put, we as people are the reason for and the center of everything. God created everything for us! The trinitarian life is the answer to His kingdom coming to earth as it is in heaven. In heaven we will be in perfect relationship with God the way he intended it before sin and destruction entered our world. Before we were created our rescue plan was already set in motion. God knew before we took our first breath, every sin that you and I would commit, every mistake and failure, as well as every sin that would be committed against us. Nothing we’ve done past, present, or future takes him by surprise, and nothing is beyond his forgiveness. Jesus is the answer to God’s “dream of our adoption”. He was predestined to “cross every chasm” between us and God, to make that perfect relationship possible.
Psalm 139:1-4 says, “You have searched me, LORD, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, LORD, know it completely.”
We are known completely. That can be a little unnerving but don’t allow it to be. Allow it to bring you freedom, freedom to be who you are, just the way God created you to be. I love the thought that He sat and dreamed about how he would create each of us. The color of our hair, skin, and eyes. What our laugh would sound like and what gifts and talents he would give each of us. Who you are is exactly who you are meant to be and you are a one of a kind unique individual. There has never been and never will be another person exactly like you. To know that there is a God who knows our deepest darkest secrets and the absolute worst about us, and loves us without condition ANYWAY is mind boggling. We don’t have to maintain a certain weight, reach a certain position in our career, be funnier, prettier, have a bigger house, or more followers on twitter to be completely accepted and unconditionally loved.
There are things in life that definitely bring us joy and fun like a healthy weight, a nice house, and promotion at work and there is nothing wrong with any of that. The relationship God calls us into is full of music and joy, blessedness and peace. The point I’m making is that our worth cannot be found in those temporary and changing things. Our worth comes from who we are. Who God created us to be and the fact that we are unique and loved and have a personal purpose in life that is different from anyone else. God loved us enough to create us even though he knew in advance how it would all play out. So enter that trinitarian life, and find a relationship of safety, security, joy, music, blessedness, unchained communion and intimacy with God and people, that will result in other centered love and self giving. No more living out of a place of scarcity where we have to compete for limited resources of success, worth, and value, but rather a place we can celebrate the achievements of others without feeling threatened or less than. A place where we are free to live a life of adventure and risk because failure won’t devastate us. A place where we can sing like no one is listening and dance like no one is watching...except God, and he thinks we have the most beautiful voice and dance moves ever!