The refrain “this is Kingdom work” has been repeating itself in my headspace today. I see that common phrase on Instagram captions, used as a branding tool, and quipped in everyday conversation. But I wonder if we would apply that turn of phrase to the same things if we sought to understand what it truly insinuates.
Sarah Bessey writes, in her book Out of Sorts,
“In the Kingdom of God, we join God in co-creation, in the work of the new earth. We love and we follow Jesus. We shape our lives into His life, to live here on earth as He would live among us. We weren’t called to follow political parties or ideology, naturalism, consumerism, or power. Instead, we were called to apprentice ourselves to Jesus’ way of life. We were called to be a part of establishing the Kingdom of God here and now in our walking-around lives. Partnering with God to see the kingdom come.”
If we profess Jesus as our Savior, if we brand ourselves with the name Christian, than we are in turn responsible for Kingdom work in our everyday lives. There, I said it. We don’t get a pass to live like we choose and follow who we want to then come back to Jesus as a get out of jail free card. But here is grace: even if we do mess up, turn our back on true Love, He opens his arms to welcome us back home. Our relationship with Jesus isn’t based on what we do, but rather the blood shed on the cross for our sake. As a result of our relationship with Him, we should hope to further the Kingdom of God, and take ACTION.
Jesus is loving and gracious, but he is also expectant. He expects that we continue to follow Him, live out the Great Commission here on earth in whatever space we’ve been given. (James 2:14, Matthew 28:19, Matthew 22:37-39)Whether that is praying for your kids as a stay-at-home mom, smiling at the boss you’re tempted to hate at work, or heading out to a third world country. We all have the responsibility of striving to live like Jesus; though we won’t all be pastors, spiritual teachers, or Christian celebrities.
Kingdom work is happening all around you. Just look at creation. Watch the beauty of a sunset or the beckoning of the ocean waves and notice how it is worship. The smile of a newborn babe, a couple who has been married for fifty years, the tears of a groom. This is beauty. This is love. This is life.
I honestly don’t know if any of this makes sense. Perhaps you’ll read this as the ramblings of a twenty-something on a desperate search for meaning. All I know is, when I walked on the beach the other day, praying and worshipping, Hillsong United’s new song “So Will I (100 Billion X) stopped me in my tracks. Looking at the ocean, waves ceaselessly crashing, the lyrics started to make sense. “If creation sings your praises so will I.” I want my life to matter, to count for something, because His life mattered. We seek purpose, when He has gifted us with mission. To go and do likewise. To pursue Him with abandon & help others see His majesty.
This is Kingdom work, friends. You’re doing it. Even in the moments that seem insignificant and lonely and require so much more than you think you’re capable of giving. You don’t have to go on the mission field to live missionally. That is my choice, but yours might be to live out the Kingdom in a million other ways. And you still count. You’re still advancing the Kingdom, if you keep your gaze on Him.
here’s to a life broken & surrendered & free.