May 09, 2012

Praying for the Kingdom

Matthew 6:5-15

“Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”
—Matthew 6:10


I was never able to understand the attraction of big cities. Traffic jams, aggressive drivers, and congestion have always been enough to keep me away from areas of high population.

A few years ago, my wife took me into the heart of Chicago. As we drove into the city, I felt anxiety rising within me as my shoulders became tense and my stomach felt queasy. After walking around for a while, we went to a building called the John Hancock Center, a 95-story skyscraper, the fourth tallest building in Chicago. From the observation deck of the Hancock Center, the city of Chicago looks completely different. The streets seem to make sense, the traffic flow seems peaceful -rather than chaotic, and the view of Lake Michigan, Navy Pier, and other attractions helped me appreciate the city in a new way. I still think driving on the streets seems chaotic, but I now understand that there is some kind of order that I can’t see at the street level.

Often, our prayers can be focused on the chaos of the “street level” of our lives. We are concerned about health, finances, relationships, and decisions. Jesus does not deny the chaotic troubles of this world, but he invites us to see the world also from God’s perspective as he teaches us to pray that God’s kingdom will come, and that God’s will may be accomplished.

Lord Jesus, help me to know you so that my desires may change. Shape my interests and pursuits so that I genuinely want to see your kingdom come. Amen.

About the author — Bill Sytsma

Bill Sytsma is a graduate of Calvin Theological Seminary (M.Div) and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (D.Min). He is the author of the book Follow the Leader and is serving as the pastor of New Life Christian Reformed Church in Highland, Indiana. He and his wife, Staci, have hosted support groups for families built through adoption. He and Staci are the proud parents of three active boys: Luke, Isaac, and Nico.

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