Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Now and not yet

Therefore you must be ready, for the son of man is coming at an hour you do not expect.  Matthew 24:44

I remember, years ago, a pastor said in a class I was taking, "The kingdom of God is now."  It was a revelation to me to consider that the Kingdom of God is not (or not only) something in the future, but it is a present reality, right this minute.  The  now and the not yet.

The verse above is part of an apocalyptic passage in Matthew.  I don't like those kind of passages, because I feel helpless in the light of the them.  God is coming; something will happen.  We don't know when or where or what, but we need to be prepared.  And I always feel woefully unprepared, and it makes me anxious.

Barbara Brown Taylor in her book The Seeds of Heaven, says:
The truth is that Christ comes again and again and again - that God has placed no limit on coming to the world, but is always on the way to us here and now. The only thing we are required to do is to notice - to watch, to keep our eyes peeled.
God is here now.  He is coming, but he is also here now.  Right now.  In my office.  What difference does that make in the way I live my life?

Taylor says that the passage in Matthew (24:29-44) speaks of three virtues - enduring love, discernment, and alertness.  We are called to keep watch - God is here now and God is coming.  Be aware and notice.  And while you are doing that, remember enduring love.  Remember the mission we have been given, which is to reach out to the lost, the hungry, the homeless and to act with enduring love.  We don't know when God may come, but we do know that God is here. (I love that idea.)  And if God is here, then we had better be about God's work.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home