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The Kingdom in the Shadows

This world is so loud it's deafening. Everyone has an opinion and the loudest voice seems to get the attention.

There is another way, there is a subtle way. The Kingdom of God is different, it's opposite of the world's way where the loudest and strongest survive. The Kingdom of God is subtle, you have to look for it in the shadows. It's a place where weakness is celebrated.

The Kingdom of God is not flashy; it's void of pomp and circumstance. And its citizens, they are made up of outcasts. The Kingdom is for the lost and for the broken. It is for the outsider, the fringe of society. The kingdom is for the hopeless.

You have to look for the Kingdom. You must search for it. The Kingdom is found in the shadows. If you are not careful, you might miss it.

Jesus described the Kingdom as being in our midst.

“Being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, he answered them, “The kingdom of God is not coming in ways that can be observed, nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There!’ for behold, the kingdom of God is in the midst of you.”” (Luke 17:20–21, ESV)

In another passage Jesus described the Kingdom like a seed.

“He said therefore, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden, and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.”” (Luke 13:18–19, ESV).

The Kingdom is subtle, it's small.

If you want to see the Kingdom, look at Jesus. He live the Kingdom life. .

  • Jesus' life was marked by subtlety. He wasn't born into royalty. He wasn't born in a palace. A carpenter's son, he was born to poor family in a town that was probably a little backwards. His family tree was blemished with people who did some atrocious things. Jesus seemingly came out of nowhere.
  • Jesus' life was marked by service. He came not to be served but to serve and give his life as a ransom for many.
  • Jesus' life was marked by suffering. Jesus was obedient to death, even death on a cross. He came to his own, but his own did not receive him.

You are invited to be part of this Kingdom. When you surrender your life to Jesus, you become a citizen of the Kingdom and this Kingdom is live out in the lives of its citizens.

Here are a few three things you can do to embrace the values of the Kingdom:

  • Be intentional about the things you are doing. Don't let the season happen to you. Focus on the things you need to. Intentionally slow down.
  • Make room for interruptions. Interruptions happen because people are in need. These are opportunities to serve people around you.
  • Know your suffering is being used to Identify you with Jesus. You are either suffering, coming out of suffering, or headed into suffering. Recognize that God uses suffering to deepen our relationship with him. Don't look for suffering, but embrace it when it comes.

(If you aren't in a season suffering, find a person who is an encourage them.)

The Kingdom of God is subtle. It is a Kingdom in in the shadows.

 

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