The Kingdom of God and Baby Gates
I love being a part-time stay at home dad. But along with staying at home means that I do much of the household chores. My two-year-old Eloise loves to help, so as much as possible we tag-team them. But sometimes the task at hand isn’t suitable for a toddler’s help, and I have to put her in the other room and close the gate. And there is nothing in the whole world that Eloise hates more than a latched baby gate.
But Eloise has a trick up her tiny sleeve. She will stand at the gate, raise her hands and say “I hold you.” Eloise is independent and rarely wants to be picked up. And I’m a sucker, so of course I reach over the gate and pick her up. But it’s a trap. As soon as I pick her up she squirms out of my arms. All she wanted was the freedom to be where she wasn’t permitted to be.
I am so grateful that God doesn’t work that way. We don’t have to try to trick our way into his presence. There are no restrictions to prohibit us joining God’s work. He wants us to be in on his plans and to take part in the restoration of people and society. Scripture even calls us priests to God himself through Jesus.
A priest is someone who mediates between the people and God. Our role is to bring Jesus to the people, carrying his love and goodness with us and sharing it with everyone we are in contact with. We are, in every situation, to be a foretaste of God’s kingdom. However, following Jesus for me might look different than it looks for you. Although every single person has been uniquely gifted, skilled, and positioned by God, all followers of Jesus are called to be salt and light.
If you’re not quite sure how to do that, Ashland Theological Seminary has a ministry that can help you. Join us at the City Gates Conference in Detroit on September 12, 2015. We’ll have nationally-known speakers who have valuable insights on how to bring your faith and your work together and carry the kingdom with you in everything you do.
Photo courtesy Martin LaBar. Sourced via Flickr.