Suffering and Seeking the Kingdom

Suffering and Seeking the Kingdom

Below are some thoughts on Matthew 6 that I wrote one year ago. I sent them to my wife, Rachel, who read them and saved them on the eve of an impossibly difficult year. Today, still in the midst of our darkest suffering, I want to tell you that I have often failed to believe and do what I am encouraging you toward. Rachel sent my words back to me last week, and there they were: staring into my heart, rebuking and upholding, reminding me of things that never change. 

To seek the kingdom
Is to adopt the mindset 
That God alone can provide

It means we give up tomorrow 
Because it has enough trouble for then
And we have enough trouble now 

If God alone is our patron 
Then all our scheming and anxiety 
Isn’t even necessary

Our concern, worry, and anxiety is then shifted 
To the kingdom that has no end
And all we need is given at just the right time 

Seeking the kingdom is accepting the beatitude life with open arms. Blessed are the…mourning, meek, hungering, persecuted, peacemaking, and poor in spirit people. Those people need God to act! Those people can’t do it on their own! 

The gospel of the Kingdom that Jesus is proclaiming in the Sermon on the Mount is for people who know they need to repent, who know they are bankrupt without God, and yet trust him to provide. They see their need for God more and more as their greatest requirement, and then they see that God has provided for them with Jesus on the cross, and little by little what overwhelms their minds and hearts are considerations of his kingdom rather than their own. 

To conceptualize our lack when our whole life has been focused on creating and maintaining self-sufficiency is very difficult—so God gives us mercies of suffering and loss. 

Your experience of not knowing what to do next, or where to turn for answers is the gift of God to you.