Monday, July 20, 2020

July 19 - Groaning or Glory?

We live in a time of extraordinary upheaval, unrest ... even fearful isolation. And finding God's peace can be more than challenging. 

I've spoken of the times we live in in terms of RESET and REALIGNMENT. 
We are being called to embrace and enter into God's RESET- his call to the Church to RETURN through a thorough truthfulness about ourselves and our church life. 

Our scriptures this morning are pretty clear as to the state we find ourselves in and God is not caught by surprise by all this! The human state is a fallen one - a fall that took the whole creation down with it! Paul describes the creation as GROANING under the weight of sin; groaning as in childbirth; desperately crying out for the birthing of the new creation; for the Kingdom of Heaven to come on earth... for the Sons of a God to finally come into the fullness of the reality of their redemption! 

We pray it as a matter of course in the liturgy of the Our Father but do we cry out? Do we cry out with eager longing, as if we're waiting on Tiptoe, straining to see it coming on the horizon ? Thy Kingdom come... Thy will be done, on EARTH as it is in heaven. 

I used to think that groaning meant that we Go Right On Achieving Nothing! And that has been the lot of the Church for decades in America where the only fruit we see are more and more divisions and competition, more and more appeasing the culture and bent theology - bent away from the plumbline of the Word of God. Called to "shine as lights" we have increasingly hid our light or allowed it to almost be snuffed out. Jesus issued the warning that our times would be just like the days of Noah, before God judged the whole earth by water. 

We can still go right on Achieving nothing today or we can enter into the kind of groaning that Paul calls us to here in Roman's 8. This kind of groaning has a different outcome... it's God's Revelation Of A New... 
Glory!

This groaning is a deep intercession and repentance based on thorough truthfulness before the Word of God; 

This groaning is the labor pains of the coming Kingdom of Heaven; 

This groaning is the return to holiness, righteousness and peace with humility in the Body of Christ;

This groaning is the only kind that eventually leads to GLORY... GOD'S LIFE OPERATING & REVEALED in YOU! GOD'S LOVING OPERATIONAL REVELATION through YOU! 

Whatever acronym you use the point is this groaning is now different...
It's groaning unto redemption and revelation... and it's why we are here now! We are the agents of the coming Kingdom of God... forward agents to pray and act for God's Revelation Of A New Glory... His Glory

Thy Kingdom Come, THY will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 

Pray it with me... 

Thy Kingdom Come, THY will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 

Again...

Thy Kingdom Come, THY will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 

Doesn't that sound like both a petition and a declaration? 

Let's make it the latter! 
Again...

Thy Kingdom Come! 
THY will be done!
on earth as it is in heaven!

Thy Kingdom Come! 
THY will be done!
on earth as it is in heaven!

Last time... loudly... let the city and the mountains hear you!!

Thy Kingdom Come! 
THY will be done!
on earth as it is in heaven!

Amen and amen.