Jesus, thy kingdom come, today
FRED JEFFERY Fred Jeffery is a retired teacher and bus driver.
What is your main goal for this year? It is a good time to reflect on how you can improve your life in this new year ahead. Perhaps, you want a better job to provide for your family’s needs. Maybe your goal is to improve your health, which is an important goal of mine: start walking more and maintain a healthy diet. Perhaps you just want to live carefully through the year and not encounter the coronavirus or the Omicron variant spreading its havoc through our world. Whatever your goal or desire is, have you given any thought as to the Kingdom of God coming into your life to show you how Jesus can completely transform and reshape you like the potter’s clay? Are you willing to be broken, to look at new ways to become part of the Kingdom of God and to shape yourself into a vessel of honour to serve those who are suffering and hurting in our world? I am reading a book loaned to me by my friend called, The Problem of Jesus, written by Mark Clark. It is a fascinating look at the Kingdom of God in our lives. The author says: “It is more a book about us. It is about finding how your deepest desires in life to flourish, to have joy and passion and pleasure can be satisfied. “It is about both the quantity of your life and the quality of your life. It is about finding your life. It is about finding love and giving it away, finding satisfaction, happiness and contentment beyond anything the world can give you or ever steal away. To get there, we must start with Jesus.” (Page XVIII) In Matthew 4:23, “Jesus went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people.” Also in Mark 1:14-15,” Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God and saying, “the time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” John 18:36-37, we read, “Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not of this world ... You say that I am a king. For this purpose, I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world.’” Jesus is still with us today, through his Holy Spirit and he is waiting for you to surrender completely, to help you become a part of God’s Kingdom here on earth, to make you what he wants you to be. Jesus came into the world to start a new order. So, Jesus said the kingdom of God is at hand. This phrase, “kingdom of God,” is recorded 122 times, 90 of which comes from Jesus’ own lips. What he really is saying is that we need to repent and believe in the gospel. How much does the gospel enter into your life? Does it change you to become more like Jesus? Is it important to surrender your life this year and to turn it over for his purposes to reach out to seek and to save the lost around you? Jesus said to “seek first his Kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33) He really does not want us to worry about our life, about what we eat or drink, or about our body what clothes we will wear. We are to leave our worrying to him, that is more important and he knows we have need of such things. I find my own life is becoming more dependent on the Lord. I really do need to have him in my life. The Word of God is convicting me to become what I ought to be, made in his image and to live according to his will for me. When I walk or have my quiet time, I sense the Lord is more present than I have known him for some time. He is real and dynamic, and new things are happening to me. He is changing me and I feel that the Kingdom of God, the message of Jesus, is just as relevant today as it was 2,000 years ago when Jesus first began his ministry. The Kingdom of God refers to his reign or rule in your life. Jesus still brings about the pivotal moment of salvation to the world. He knows what you truly could become if you would just allow him to enter and take charge. Try him and see for yourself. You will never regret this decision, for he is seeking you and calling your name to repent and believe. Where you will spend eternity depends on your decision to seriously seek him for the Kingdom of God is at hand.