In Part 1 of this series, we discussed how Jesus gave us a mandate to “seek first His Kingdom and His way of doing and being right,” (Matthew 6:33); however, in many areas of our lives we get this instruction backwards. For instance, instead of seeking first His Kingdom in our churches, we wind up seeking first the advancement of our churches. So instead of having Kingdom churches (churches that prioritize the Kingdom of God above all else), we often end up with “church kingdoms” that are primarily concerned with institutional self-preservation. This is a sad reality, because it means that so many churches today are completely missing out on the Kingdom reality and Kingdom relationship that our Creator so desires to share with us.
How do we reform our churches into Kingdom churches? How do we move past a counterfeit reality and back into a Kingdom-first reality? I believe the answers to these questions, and so many others, can be found in our Constitution, the Word of God. Read these passages below, and let them bring renewal and inspiration to guide you into a Kingdom-first reality.
“Be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”Romans 12:2 King James Version
“Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you, but be inwardly transformed by the Holy Spirit through a total reformation of how you think. This will empower you to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in his eyes.”Romans 12:2 The Passion Translation (TPT)
“2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”Romans 12:2 New Living Translation (NLT)
The process for renewal begins with you and me. We must personally “seek, strife for, go after with all of our might, and we must be ravenously hungry for His way of doing and being, and that will be right/correct for us,” first and in all that we do and in every area of our lives.
“3 Roll your works (everything that you do) upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly/completely to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to/with His will, and] so shall your plans be established, and your plans will succeed.”Proverbs 16:3 AMPC paraphrased
“5 Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart (spirit) and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding.
6 In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.”Proverbs 3:5-6 AMPC
Are there plans for you, for each of us who enter time and this planet before we are born, before we arrive in our here?
“29 For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was [a]aware and [b]loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren.”Romans 8:29 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
“10 For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship, His masterpiece), [a]recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].”Ephesians 2:10 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC) paraphrased
“16 You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
before a single day had passed.
7 I can never escape from your Spirit!
I can never get away from your presence!
8 If I go up to heaven, you are there;
if I go down to the grave, [a] you are there.
9 If I ride the wings of the morning,
if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
and your strength will support me.”Psalms 139:16 – 7-10 NLT
“10 Wherever I go, your hand will guide me;
your strength will empower me.
11 It’s impossible to disappear from you”Psalm 139:10-11 The Passion Translation (TPT)
“11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”Jeremiah 29:11 NLT
“5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew [and] approved of you [as My chosen instrument], and before you were born, I separated and set you apart, consecrating you; (dedicated to a sacred or divine purpose) and
I appointed you as a prophet (a person regarded as an inspired teacher and/or proclaimer of the will of God) to the nations.
10 See, I have this day appointed you to the oversight of the nations and of the kingdoms to root out and pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.”Jeremiah 1:5, 10 AMPC paraphrased
“11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”Jeremiah 1:5, 10 AMPC paraphrased
Each of us are creatively designed by our Creator and our Designer for a very specific and unique purpose, a divine purpose. Our purpose is found in our eternity and in our eternalness. Our success cannot be accurately measured nor correctly defined from any other perspective than that of our mission in our eternity. Our DNA is specifically programmed by our Designer to prepare us for our service to humanity in a particular area of society. This process is a function of the eternal component of our being and who we really are forever, our spirit. We cannot just decide intellectually with our ability to reason in our mind, our emotions, our feelings, and our personality, but we must engage our spirit, the eternal component of who we are forever. It has been said that one of the most tragic experiences for humanity is for us to be what the world calls successful in an area where our Creator God did not call them/us and design them/us to function. Not only do they miss the joy, the peace, the relationship and the fulfillment and contentment of accomplishing their God-given mission on the earth, but all of humanity, present and future misses the benefit of their gifting and their unique ability that our Designer, God has given them/and placed inside of them to deliver to the earth for the benefit all of humanity.
There are huge ramifications of this for society. Why have we not discovered the cures for cancer, for Alzheimer’s, for ALS, for Parkinson’s, and for all of the other horrible diseases and sicknesses that cause such enormous pain and catastrophic suffering to humanity? Could it be that we have chosen not to allow those who came bearing the gifts and the abilities from our Creator and from our God access to our planet? Have we chosen to destroy their earthsuit and not to allow them to grow to maturity and to be able to deliver their gifts from our Creator to/for humanity?
C.S. Lewis said, “you cannot go back and change the beginning, but you can begin where you are and change the ending.”
Perhaps we should revisit and reevaluate our position on the unborn. We can begin now and change the ending, the outcome for our planet. Our God delivers His benefits to humanity through other humanity, through you and me. Giving is the transference of value. What do you have to give that is of value to others? You have something to give, I promise you. Everyone does. This is our design.