By Emily Cavins
“The time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God is at hand;
repent, and believe in the gospel.” ~ Mark 1:15
Lately, I have been obsessing over a song by Christian singer Lauren Daigle. The lyrics from her recent song “These Are the Days” have jostled my thinking. The days we live in can feel uncertain, bleak, and overwhelming, but on the other hand, as Christians, we have a different take on all of it because of Jesus. The uplifting song gave me a bit of a kick in the pants to quit focusing on the chaos of this world and get back to the essential gospel.
The Good News
A phrase in the song, “these are the days we’ve been dreaming of,” brings to mind today’s reading from Mark Chapter 1. As Jesus went through Galilee proclaiming the Kingdom of God, he said that the time of fulfillment had arrived and that the Kingdom of God was imminent. Jesus gave the Good News, “repent and believe in the gospel,” which ushered in the Kingdom of God. His Kingdom arrived with the proclamation of the Good News. So today, when we continue to proclaim the Good News, the Kingdom of God is still at hand. We are living in the days that Jesus proclaimed would come. It’s not necessarily the end-of-the-world type of the coming of the Kingdom of God, but it is the current Kingdom of God on earth. I find great comfort in living in that Kingdom rather than any political or ideological one.
The Kingdom of God
The kingdoms of this earth are opposed to the Kingdom of God, so we shouldn’t be surprised by the upheaval of ideologies across the globe. The Kingdom of God operates on a separate level from earthly kingdoms. The principles are entirely different. Instead of revenge, God’s Kingdom demands love, forgiveness, and reconciliation with God and others. God’s Kingdom points into each heart and says be conformed to my ways instead of blaming everyone else for the problems we face. The Kingdom of God entails joy amid trial rather than fear and despair. God’s Kingdom is hope when faced with sickness, death, or loss.
Don’t you just relish the time you spend sitting in adoration or participating in mass? You can feel that you are living in the Kingdom at those moments – those times of comfort and communion, but even outside of those times, we are living in the Kingdom. “These are the days we’ve been dreaming of,” as the song says. If you have ever dreamed of a bright future, guess what? You are living in it! “These are the days, these are the days!” We are living in the days of the Kingdom that Jesus established. Jesus’ Kingdom is full of life, love, and joy, and we can live that way because those are the operational laws of His Kingdom. Each expression of love you extend, each caring smile, or hug, is the daily operation of God’s Kingdom. Just realize you are living in it.
Dear Lord—Open my eyes to see that I am living in your Kingdom on earth. Please help me keep my eyes on you, my King, rather than the circumstances surrounding me. Let me obey your commands to love, forgive, and spread the Good News.
Call to Action
Find someone who is discouraged by the news in today’s chaotic world and remind them they are living in God’s Kingdom. If they are not living in God’s Kingdom, invite them in by telling the Good News.
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