Monday, January 28, 2008

The Kingdom [as I know it]

The Kingdom, as I know it, is…

The well-worn path to my favorite coffee shop. The way that I am known there by both name and drink, greeted warmly when I walk through its doors. The friends I have come to know better because of the times I spend there. The way Jefe dims the lights at 9 p.m. and puts his iPod mix over the speakers. The many Chuck Norris jokes exchanged over tea and chai and cowboy coffee. It’s the richness of the memories I have in the midst of its cozy confines and the people I love.

The Kingdom, as I know it, is…

Tripping as I come onto stage to lead worship for a set at The Burn. If I had even the slightest notion that it was about me, I think God chuckled kindly at my own clumsiness and reminded me that it was, and always will be, about Him. As it should be. It’s the way I come alive when I feel His breath and presence infused into the words I sing and the notes I play. It’s the way my heart burns at the thought of Heaven coming down and dwelling, dancing, moving, igniting, changing hearts in our midst. It’s the way the watchman on the wall is blazing with the fire to see the Divine meet the mortal. Pressing in, digging deeper, never relenting, never losing hope. It’s the way I realize, all over again, that He is closer than my skin, invading every part of me until I am completely at one with Him.

I cannot be silent anymore.

The Kingdom, as I know it, is…

Gathering around with friends that feel like family, with little grasp on what the words start and dismissed mean. Worshipping together, lingering in His presence and speaking truth with the same fire in all our eyes. Seeing the Kingdom in their lives, their art, their hearts. It’s hearing it in their words and singing along with it in their songs. It’s in a room full of broken icons that represent the very image of God, coming together as a beautiful mosaic and reflecting who He truly is in an ever-potent way.

The Kingdom, as I know it, is…

The way the candles flicker on my mantle and my bathroom counters. They remind me of the Light that came down to drive away the darkness in our world, the hope that came into our midst. Yahweh with skin. Emmanuel. It’s the artwork adorning the once empty spaces in my apartment and the meaning behind each piece. It’s the way God has proven over and over again that He is a faithful Father, providing my every need and astonishing me at His perfect timing. It’s so much more than bills paid, budgets balanced and savings in the bank. It is a perfect peace, a wholeness, in which He has taught me to dwell. He dismisses my every worry and gently, yet righteously, exposes my distractions and idols as I learn how to be part of His plan of redemption for the world each day that I live.

[To be continued via Rele-web.]

So tell me: what is the Kingdom to you?

5 Comments:

Blogger Brad said...

Hearing Rachel sing at SN.

4:25 PM  
Blogger tmamone said...

Beautiful!

What's the Kingdom for me? Man, good question!

It's seeing the sun set over the countryside while I'm trying in my car and Dylan's on the radio.

It's seeing something from my hands (whether it's money or an article I've written or whatever) bless some one else.

Those are the only two I can think of at the moment. I know there are a lot more.

5:30 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

Aw, Brad! You guys are the best. :)

5:39 PM  
Blogger colleenness said...

winner! the blog de rach. I'm excited. keep stopping by...makes my heart glad.

12:02 AM  
Blogger Jonathan Foster said...

Hey really nice stuff. Thanks. Jonathan at www.theproblemwithreligion.com

12:34 PM  

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