Make the Connection

Church is weird. When you go to a shoe store, you get shoes. When you go to a restaurant, you get dinner. When you go to IKEA, you get lost. You also get a sofa and an astonishing array of Allen Wrenches. The general pattern is that you go to a place, get something you did not have, and then you go home. But that’s not how church works. I can’t give you God. I can’t give you God any more than I can give you gravity, or give fish water, or give Dorothy a way to get back to Kansas.

My job, my calling, the thing I was put on Earth to do, the thing I’m so excited about and grateful for and overwhelmed by that I could just about pop, is to give you something you already have. Church is weird.

Maybe we’re not always aware of gravity. Maybe fish aren’t conscious of the ocean in which they live, move, and have their being. Dorothy had to be told that she’d had the power all along. That’s how this works. The Truth is already true about you. You are already amazing, powerful, beautiful, loved and loving. You are already a child of God. But claiming that inheritance, uplifting your life, changing the world requires knowing who you are and doing something about it. The theme here is conscious connection. If your spiritual life in general and your prayer practice in particular includes that element, you’re going to see results. If not, well, you’re not.

I can’t prove Lake Erie to a Trout. I can’t show you your relationship to Spirit. I’m happy to try, though. I can quote the Bible all day long. We can talk about Image and Likeness, Salt and Light. We can review “Our Father," "the works I do you shall do also, and greater works than these," and "Christ in you, your hope of glory." After lunch, we could spend some time on "the Kingdom of Heaven is in your midst." After that, maybe we’d dip in to Walt Whitman. Maybe we’d read some Charles Fillmore.  We might look at the guy he influenced, Norman Vincent Peale, or the guy he influenced, Robert Schuller, or the guy he influenced, Joel Osteen. They’re all wonderful. But maybe we’d just skip to the front of the line and review the works of my favorite television minister, Fred Rogers.

As much fun as that would be, it’s not necessary. You already know what you need to know. You’ve seen it and felt it in moments of beauty, inspiration, and courage. You already know what love feels like, so you’ve got all the experience you need. With that in mind:

“Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10, NASB)

Jesus gave us this prayer in the context of generations of waiting for God to show up, fighting about time, place, and worthiness, and all kinds of distance and duality. It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that here, we’re dealing with a different concept of the Kingdom, of the Messiah, and where God is in general. Part of the “Your kingdom come” message here is that God, and thus miracles and answered prayer, are already here. It’s not a matter of making God happen any more. It never was.

As always, the prophecies are in a state of fulfillment, right now, but not in the way we may have expected. That’s a good lesson in general, but especially as we move through the prayer process. We are reminded that it’s not our kingdom, subject to material wants and ego issues. It’s God’s. If we can keep "not My will, but Yours be done” (Luke 22:42, NASB) in mind, we’re on the right track. Which brings us to the next line.

When we say "Your will be done," we are not just stating that God is in charge, but that God’s Will is being carried out right now. This is a statement of actuality rather than eventuality. And what is God’s Will for His children? What is God’s idea about you? We talked about "abba" and the concept of Loving Creator last time around. Powerful prayers have an awareness that God’s Will is good.

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. (Romans 12:2, NASB)

It’s time for a new idea. It’s time to make the connection in prayer. It’s time to prove it. It’s time for this to be true in manifestion as well as in mind, in experiential as well as in potential, on Earth as it is in Heaven.