January 15, 2024

MLK and the Kingdom Of God

Mark 10:13-16

There before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language.

—  Revelation 7:9

In the United States today we commemorate the life and work of Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK). As we should. King dreamed about the kingdom of God—where the children of former slaves and the children of former slaveowners would see each other as family, and where everyone would share equally in freedom and justice. King also did what he could to make that kingdom dream real, even at the cost of his own life.

I grew up in the world King was trying to change. And when I was about five years old, I got to live into some of that change. A new family moved in across from us. Right away, my brother, Tom, and I met Cheryl and Larry. They were black, and we were white. And in no time at all we were friends.

When I was five, I had never heard of the kingdom of God. But I had seen a glimpse of it. Because in the kingdom, we all will be children of God together. I can hardly wait. How about you?

Meanwhile, I keep wondering: What can I do, and what can the church do, to make the kingdom real? Do you think maybe we have to become more like children?

King Jesus, you urge us not just to welcome little children but to become like little children. How else will we see the kingdom? How else will we make the kingdom real? So help us. Amen.

About the author — Bob Arbogast

Bob Arbogast is the pastor of Celebration Fellowship church in Ionia, Michigan. In his spare time, he plays guitar in a West Michigan blues band. He and his wife Jan have been married forty years and have three adult daughters. Bob has been praying the psalms since 2002.

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