Your will be done
So, thanks for coming back for more. In the last post I tried to figure out what the first couple of lines of the Lord’s Prayer mean to me. I tried to get my head around the idea of being able to call a Holy God, Father. The next couple of lines that I want to think about now are about God’s Kingdom being on earth in the same way as it is in heaven.
Your Kingdom come, your will be done.
Your kingdom come,your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
When I imagine myself praying this, I used to, and sometime still do, have impression of saying this in some sort of palatial throne room, bowing down before an austere king. This imagined scene is very formal and evokes a kind of “Sire, your most humble servant dutifully awaits your command.” feeling. When I first learned the prayer, this was how I thought a king should be addressed. In my picture, the king doesn’t really do anything, he just sits on his throne, watching me imperiously. He seems almost bored and in the back of mind I am thinking, “Oh man, I hope I don’t get some wierd-ass instruction to do something embarrassing or awkward.”. The throne room in which I imagine myself is very open, almost sterile and boring, maybe even a little chilly. Do I really, honestly, want this kind of kingdom where I live? It’s going to be a real downer. 🙁
When you think about the difference between the concept of a Father-like God, and this cold and distant king, the contrast is jarring. Isn’t it? How can these two images represent the same person? It doesn’t. By believing that God is cold and distant stops me from getting to the point of the prayer. I’m merely reciting it like an incantation in the hopes of gaining favour with a higher power. That doesn’t sound a lot like how Jesus did things.
When Jesus talked about “The Kingdom” he described many different facets of it in many different ways. He described the kingdom as like a man scattering seed or as a huge tree providing shelter. His lifestyle consisted of a lot of teaching, but it was of a style which readily drew people to him. He was accessible and approachable. Outcasts made a point of tracking him down and children clambered up into his lap mid speech – and they were welcomed there. He spent time and partied with prostitutes and tax men – and kept a clean conscience.
Jesus said that he had come to bring life in all it’s fullness. “Paul”, the author of a letter to the Christ followers in Rome, said that to live in God Kingdom was to live a life of goodness, peace and joy.
To be honest, with my hand on my heart, I could never say “Your Kingdom come, you will be done” if it was to the king I imagined earlier. But with this Father God and His kingdom, which Jesus represents – that’s something I can get behind.
Your Kingdom come – a kingdom of parties with under-dogs and with mischievous children. A kingdom of revolutionary thinking and teaching. A kingdom which promises it’s citizens a full life of peace, goodness and joy. A kingdom that promises shelter and protection for all and a king who promises an easy burden for those who are worn out. A king who promises a full and satisfying life. This is something I feel happy to tell others about.
When I am praying for a kingdom to released on earth, it’s so important to know who the king is.
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
This is starting to make sense to me now.