Thursday, September 30, 2010

Kingdom Come and Cola

A few weeks ago I broke down in tears while buying dog food and Diet Pepsi. The heavens and earth collided, and I couldn't help but feel both the world's grief and the joy of Jesus flanking me.
  • It took a Mormon to revive Christian faith in prayer and due process.
  • Football season kicked off and 24-packs of soda were on sale.
  • A girl died of cancer, but her testimony stirred international inspiration.
  • An Olsen twin skipped another week of eating but made the front cover.
  • My daughters giggled in the shopping cart.
  • A father thumbed keys on his phone, ignoring his crying son.
Reconciling the holy beauty and horrid pain of our world is a harrowing task. The heavens laugh and the earth laments. I sometimes wonder if there is any greater joy than this moment, or any deeper pain than my past. My emotions are inconsistent, and I project the sentiment on God.

"Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven."

Happily I will pray "Your Kingdom come..." if it means a discount on carbonated beverages. But can Jesus' prayer include recession? The Coming Kingdom suggests peace and power, prosperity and freedom from pain. The Coming Kingdom promises quick check out lines and tearless monetary exchange.

No, this earth is not God's kingdom. It is mine. And yours. We envisioned it from a mountain top, told "we are like God, knowing the difference between good and evil." We were told death was mythic and fresh bread unlimited. We were told the world is watching us. It is a kingdom driven by 6.7 billion "I wills" instead of one I AM. It is a kingdom where we cry.

Nonetheless, Jesus tells us to pray for the collision, the irruption, the coming of His Father's reign. When it comes, when He comes, the tears will cease and we will raise our glasses.

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