“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.”
They followed him, this God and man all in one. They saw the connection, the words other-worldly. They wished to reach across the chasm, too, and to know this Father he spoke of.
“Teach us to pray,” they begged. To reach beyond the separation, to have a conversation with this life-changing God. I find myself standing beside them, on my tiptoes, waiting for the answer as well.
Jesus looks at all of us and invites us to join in. First, this Being isn’t just a god. He is our Father. He is personal, He brought us life. And not only do we crave to know Him, He is already crooning over us, loving us, so proud of our accomplishments.
Even when we fall flat on our face, He is loving us.
‘Cause that is what real fathers do.
The role of father in my mind is a bit blank.
My dad didn’t choose to leave, but cancer ripped him from us when I was young. While my memories are a bit fuzzy, the ones I have are good ones. Tossing a softball, playing hide and seek in the house, him bending over a textbook at the dining table late at night making me feel all safe and protected because he was home. So while it feels like centuries since I had a dad on earth, my heart feels loved and safe when it comes to thinking about him.
Holy is Your name.
And I? I am but dust.
I find it between my teeth, under my nails, in the grit of my soul. The depravity of my own soul leaves me gasping each day, and the distance between heaven and earth feels extensive and vast.
But He is here. He is holy. And He is undaunted by my need.
He loves me, in my mess, and keeps reaching out His hand, and draws me into a deeper relationship with him. His holiness doesn’t keep him from loving me.
That, my dear ones, is amazing. The very essence of Holiness isn’t afraid to reach into the gutter of complete devastation and corruption, and grasp hands with humanity, and pull us up out the sludge of sin and immorality. I love the story of David, who fell to the depths of moral failure, yet after repentance, God called him “A man after my own heart.”
Perhaps it is here, in the mystery of redemption, that we see best the depth of His kingdom come. The cross that spans death and brings life. Where not even a cold corpse and massive gravestone can hold back the life that God breathes into us.
His kingdom comes, in our needs. The holiness of heaven isn’t daunted by my deepest struggle. No, it is here that God comes and brings life. Fresh hope.
It is here that His kingdom comes and changes everything.
The surgeon who bends over the transplant patient and carefully stitches a new heart into place comes to a point where he has done all he can. He stands back and pauses.
He waits, holding his breath for the miracle he cannot do. The old heart is gone, and the new one is put in place, all his years of training and skill laid bare and open for all to see. Nothing is hidden from the bright lights of the operating room.
But only God can give life. The heart turns a lovely pink as fresh blood floods in, and the rhythmic beating begins. He nods and takes a deep breath.
This is where we live- in this moment of expectancy. In the end, it all boils down to this. The kingdom of God come to earth is God Himself in us, mortal humans.
“Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”
It’s a tall order, this living heavenly in a fallen world. That is, if we try to do it on our own. But when all is peeled back, and we lay naked and bare on the table, its simple. This story of life is about God in man.
About hope springing from devastation.
And suddenly the bleak story springs to life, and we find ourselves playing front stage in the most mysterious story ever told. So where your need catches you off guard and leaves you gasping, take hope.
This is the very threshold of a new story – new life.