Thy Kingdom Come

Author: 
Rev'd Heather
Date: 
Sunday, May 24, 2020 - 9:30am

Easter 7 – Sunday 24th May

Collect

O God the King of glory,

you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ

with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven:

we beseech you, leave us not comfortless,

but send your Holy Spirit to strengthen us

and exalt us to the place where our Saviour Christ is gone before,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

Readings

Acts 1:6-14

John 17:1-11

 

Reflection

As we continue in these uncertain times, I find great hope and encouragement in reading the Acts of the Apostles and hearing the stories of the early disciples. I cannot really begin to imagine how confusing it must have been for them. So often when they think they’ve followed what’s going on, Jesus reveals that God is so much bigger, so much greater, so much more loving, than they can comprehend. 

Today is no exception. Jesus has died and risen again. He has spent the past 40 days making appearances to them. They recognise him as the Messiah, and with that comes so much expectation from within Judaism about what that will mean for Israel. And so here they are on Mount Olivet, they think they have worked out what is going on: Jesus is about to restore the Kingdom to Israel. But no. Jesus is not about to establish a Kingdom that holds to the world’s power. Jesus is about to reveal once again that God is so much bigger, so much greater, so much more loving than they can comprehend. 

Jesus commissions the disciples to be part of a community that is to reach out to Judea, Samaria, and to all the ends of the earth. He tells them that they will never have the full picture of God’s Kingdom, but nonetheless they are invited to play their part in it. They are to be part of a global community that will be empowered by God’s Holy Spirit to witness to his amazing love, to help reveal God’s love to others 

This week I saw a tweet online. It said: ‘In 2015 no one correctly answered the job interview question: “Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?” As I was preparing to be ordained 5 years ago, I never imagined coming to a parish where within my first year I would find myself closing the church building and moving all the worship online. Even 6 months ago at clergy conference, we were encouraged in a social media workshop that the best way to reach out online is via videos, and I felt that really wasn’t for me, thank you. Six months later and I find myself live streaming almost every day, reaching out to the community and sharing scripture, prayers, and reflections about God online. God works in mysterious ways. 

This week we are invited to join in with a global movement of prayer. To join with Christians around the world praying the Lord’s prayer and particularly the words ‘Thy Kingdom Come.’ Like the early followers of Jesus we do not have the full picture of what God’s Kingdom will look like, but we can only assume that it will be so much bigger, so much greater, and some much more loving than we can comprehend. As we pray ‘thy Kingdom Come’ we open ourselves up to God, we open ourselves up to listen to God, to hear what God might be calling us to do to help further God’s kingdom here on earth. 

There are lots of ways to join in the prayers for ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ this week, and if you are on our church mailing list, you will have received an email on Wednesday with suggestions and links to resources. If you head over to our worshipping community group on Facebook, members of the church are posting reflections every day. And one of the simplest ways to join in is by praying the Lord’s prayer, and praying for five people this week who you would love to know God’s love upon their lives. You may even find yourself inviting them to church – it has never been so easier, all you need to do is invite them to like our Facebook page or share the link for the services and they don’t even need to leave home. I wonder, during these days of prayer for Thy Kingdom Come, who might you invite to share in the joy of God’s Kingdom – a kingdom that is so much bigger, so much greater and so much more loving than we can dare to imagine.  Amen.