Monday, December 05, 2005

The Kingdom of God

That term is full of meaning.
Luke used the it 33 times in his gospel.

(the kingdom of God is within [among] you. Luke 17:21)
(But the kingdom of the Father is spread out upon the earth, and men do not see it. Thomas 113)

It would certainly be well to try to get a handle on it.

Within and among are two different concepts, but at my time of life within becomes a paramount concern.

"Thy kingdom come": the first petition of Jesus, speaking to others.

How does the kingdom come in my life? Purity of Heart is to will one thing; all the little fishes go back.

Easier said than done. Our life is made up of the 'little fishes'. Give them all up? Is that what God wants? That's a deep question: to give God time means to sacrifice some of the wonderful activities that fill my life. Become a non person?

Years ago I worked as a Probation Officer, which involved a considerable amount of driving around the county. I had been trying to 'give God more time', learning quite a few of the Psalms and quite a few hymns. I found I could keep my mind on them to the exclusion of everything else. But I asked myself the question: is that what you want? And the answer of course was no; I was only 47.

Is there a happy medium, a balance between the inner and outer? What do you think?


I_Wonder said...

Perhaps God speaks to us through several small fishes. Taken together their message may outweigh the large fish.

For some reason that's not fully rational, I've rejected small and big, inner and outer, worldly and spiritual. I look for the Sacred in both as I suppose you do.

Perhaps the balance comes from focusing more on inner or outer for a period of time and then shifting our focus to the other.

Larry said...

You're so right, Paul. Thanks for this thought provoking comment. "In the rustling grass I hear him pass; he speaks to me everywhere."

This is not a case of either/or, but both/and. The initial decision is a big one, big as a whale as Jonah found to his dismay.

Some are dismayed; some overjoyed; the fish come is different sizes and shapes.

Thanks again, ole buddy.

Matt said...

Great post.. reminds me of something I read.
"The Kingdom of God is inside you (and all around you)

line from Coptic Gospel of Thomas 3.

Larry said...