I really like my own kingdom (most of the time). That is, when I think it’s working.
Now that you’ve recovered from rolling on the floor laughing at my absurdity, think about how much energy you put into getting others to do your will. I know, that’s because you’re only trying to help. But if you take a deeper look, you’ll see you are actually pushing your idea of what is best.
In reality, God is the one in charge even of my home, my car, my work, and me. Fortunately, he (not you or me) is over my husband, my kids, my family and friends, and all the others. And he has been in charge from eternity past, into the present, and even into the future.
This is good news. Because, he is the good, loving, and powerful Papa we addressed in the first part of The Lord’s Prayer. (See previous post.) He is the all-knowing and wise Father I want over my life. How about you?
What does it mean for his kingdom to come?
Praying that his kingdom would come is similar to praying that his will be done. Because of free will and the sin that follows close behind, God’s will is not always carried forth.
In this prayer we are not praying for his kingdom to come into existence. We are praying that his way of doing life, that good, loving, and just way, would come more and more into our lives and the world.
What will this look like?
This is a big deal. Especially if you have a history of getting your way by being just slightly deceitful (a.k.a. manipulative). Or if you think that by envying others or by lying you can get ahead. What about those areas of your life you really enjoy but God would consider out of control? Can you afford to give up impatience with the risk of allowing your family to live according to their own personalities?
This means that I willingly lay down my perceived rights over others. That my selfish ways be changed to generous and loving ways. That my life, and those around me, would exhibit the ways of the Spirit and not the ways of the world. (See also Galatians 5:19-26.)
How do I pray this?
- Meditate on what God is like by looking at Scripture. Along with the references above, also consider 1 Corinthians 13.
- Meditate on what God is like by looking at nature. Take a walk in a park. Feel the warmth of the sunshine. Feel the breeze. Listen to the sounds. Contemplate the intricacies involved in maintaining life. Consider the God who orchestrates it all.
- Ask God to forgive you for trying to manage your own little kingdom.
- Ask him to bring his kingdom and his ways into your life.
- Ask him to reveal to you where you need change.
If your heart is in the right place, the bulk of your prayers should never be praying for change in others. (See Matthew 3:7-5 on this.) First focus on his will coming in and through you. Then move on to praying for others.