Running Scared (Part Three) – continued

…worry is usually about seeking something other than God’s kingdom.  Worry is a sign that we are trying to have it both ways, with one foot in the kingdom of the world and the other in the kingdom of heaven.”

Hmm? What would I know about trying to have my way and God’s way?  How about my prayer this morning as I started the day: that this day would be God’s and I would live in it.  Fast forward to this afternoon:  I’m frustrated and anxious because my day is not going as I would like.  I thought my prayer was real and genuine, but my attitude towards the opportunities the Lord is putting in my path shows otherwise.  There I go again – wanting it both ways.  I wasn’t exactly worrying, but I can see what Welch is talking about and I certainly know this is true of my worries.

What is the way out of worry?  We must become students of the King and his true kingdom so that we see its beauty and glory and become enthralled by it.”

In chapter ten, “The Message of the Kingdom”, Welch has some very helpful thoughts on the God’s Kingdom. One thing especially helpful for modern Christians, is the understanding of the realness of the Kingdom here and now. “His kingdom is the kingdom of heaven, not because it is far away and ethereal. Instead, it is where the King dwells, and the King now dwells on earth in a new way. He is firmly establishing his reign where his will is done.” But there is more here: the story behind the kingdom and the enemies of the kingdom are a few more sections after that. And even that is not the end of the thoughts that direct us to toward real kingdom living in the here and now, and in particular how that connects with our money.

And then this final thought that we are left with at he end of chapter eleven:

Life in the kingdom isn’t easy, at least not when we want to share the throne.”

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Gina on July 31, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    I’m sort of rereading the book–looking over my underlining from my first read-through.

    I think my favorite one-liner in this section is from chapter 11–“But there is no private ownership in the kingdom.” How un-American!

    It’s easy and noble to proclaim that everything is God’s, but when the rubber meets the road (like giving up a cushy job with benefits to pursue…oh, let’s say, seminary, when you thought student life ended at age 21), my true allegiances are revealed. Even if I can get humble and honest enough to let go of my petty “wants”–I love Welch’s list on p.132, esp. the guitars!–I still find myself too easily aligned with what Welch calls “the kingdom of the earth and its ethos of self-protection”. Ouch.

    This section was a good reminder that “the kingdom is God’s alone…that is the only thing that can lead to peace and rest.” That seems counter-intuitive–why should knowing that I own nothing give me peace? Because I trust the Owner, the King, who is generous and good and gives me back so much more than I could ever give up for him.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Dave & Margie on August 1, 2008 at 4:50 pm

    A statement in chapter 9 stood out, “You trust God for some things but not others. You trust him for heaven but not for earth.” Trust is a big issue, but often misplaced in our lives. I do trust Him for eternal life, but often I live as the promises from His word are not true. Everytime I worry about everyday matters whether large or small, I am saying I don’t trust in God’s all-sufficient power to do what is best for me. This chapter also gives us the answer, one we know but need reminding of, “The cure is to know the One we are called to trust.” We want to be deligent in pursuing Jesus.
    After reading chapter 10 the statement, “Jesus was and is the embodiment of the kingdom because he is the King. How much more real could the kingdom be”? A new thought when thinking of the kingdom. The kingdom is not just to come, but it is now because Jesus is the embodiment of the kingdom. Great news when we face the everyday challenges and trials of this earth.

    Reply

  3. Posted by adamtisdale on August 1, 2008 at 10:35 pm

    Gina and Dave & Margie: thank you for sharing the things that were impressed upon your hearts. There is a lot of great thoughts in this book- very practical and I have found easily applied (that is, it doesn’t take long to encounter a situation where I can apply what I am reading – not that I do it well!). Keep reading (or re-reading) and helping us all process this book.

    Reply

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