A Given Kingdom

[A journal entry from my eight-day silent retreat--day two]

Biblical reflection

Luke 12:22-34
Consider the lilies

FOCUS PASSAGE:

“But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.
32“Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father, has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief come near and no moth destroys. 34For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

WHAT DO I DESIRE?

I desire to so seek God’s kingdom reign in and through me that I experience the promise of “these things will be given to me as well.” “These given things” come to me as I make His kingdom my primary and first pursuit. If I seek first that which will feed and clothe me and my family (and in my culture, that is money), I become detached from the source of life.

I desire to fearlessly and confidently belong to the little flock to whom the Father has been pleased to give the kingdom. I am seeking a given kingdom. I am not earning the kingdom or seeking to deserve the kingdom. I am receiving God’s gracious reign in my life.

So, Jesus, I come seeking Your kingdom. I trust that everything my family needs will be given to us as well. I receive the love that casts out fear, and welcome Your Shepherd’s care for us. Thank You, Father, that You desire to give us the kingdom. Such giving pleases You. And nothing is of greater value. Every physical possession is empty and valueless next to the treasure of heaven.

And what about the “purses”? What are the purses we are to provide ourselves with that do not wear out? I assume that such purses (or wallets) are meant to hold eternal treasure rather than terrestrial cash. The kind of treasure You desire to give to me cannot be stolen and is not endangered by a downturn in the stock market.

Forgive my anxiety about financial provision. I find myself waiting for our income to be equal to our current expenditures before I feel free to be at peace. Instead, You invite me to put my hopes and expectations in a different place—in the place of Your promised gift of heavenly treasure. I want my heart to be there, Father. I do not want my heart to be anxious and fearful about how to pay our rent, our bills and how to care for our basic needs and desires. Of course, make us aware of any way in which we are spending money that does not please You or benefit us.

May my heart today linger with longing for Your kingly presence and Your gracious reign. Amen.

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