Friday, June 12, 2009

The Kingdom of God - Upside Down and Inside Out, But Right

What distinguishes the Kingdom of God from the kingdoms of this world is that God’s Kingdom is, for the most part, totally opposite of what the world is. We have been so indoctrinated into the culture of this world that it requires a conscious and constant re-training of our minds to think according to the culture of the Kingdom of God.

• The world says that you must be qualified by its standards in order to be accepted for one of its positions.
o The Kingdom of God qualifies you not by what you know, but what condition your heart is in. Then you receive on-the-job training.

• While the world says that you must fight to get what you want…
o the Kingdom says, “Give, and it shall be given to you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over will men give into your bosom.”

• The world says that the key to staying healthy is keeping physically fit, eating the right foods and maintaining a weight that is ‘normal’ for your height.
o The Kingdom says that those things alone won’t do it. You will be in health as your soul (your mind, will and emotions) prospers.

• The world says if someone does you wrong you have the right to hold a grudge, sue, get even, tell your therapist, tell your friends, tell Dr. Phil, tell……………
o The Kingdom says if someone does you wrong, forgive them, bless them and pray for them. When you sling mud the first person to get dirty is you – as soon as you pick it up.

• The world says that in order to be secure in the future you must have a retirement plan.
o The Kingdom has no retirement plan. You’re in this for eternity.

• The world thinks that as people age they become less and less valuable to society. So they create “age-defying” creams and lotions, chemicals to cover grey hair, machines to zap away wrinkles and injections to puff out sagging skin.
o Advancing age is an indication of increasing wisdom and maturity, and therefore is more and more valuable to the Kingdom.

• When someone is found in a fault the world broadcasts it on prime time news, in chat rooms, in cell phone text messages, via e-mail, in “private” conversations and in thinly veiled messages delivered from the pulpit.
o The Kingdom dictates that fallen men and women be restored and protected because we all fall at one point or another – some more publicly than others.

• The world says that to be considered successful you must be able to buy the latest trends. If you have to work 2 or 3 jobs to accomplish this at the expense of your health, your family and your relationships they will readily help you. They will recommend sleep aids when you have insomnia from too much worrying; pills to help you stay awake; microwavable foods packed with chemicals since you have no time to cook; interest delayed payments on the latest big ticket item, and the list goes on and on.
o The Kingdom sets the standard, so there are no fickle trends to keep up with.
o In the Kingdom we are content in whatever state we find ourselves. We are confident in the reality that our Father owns everything and that it is available to us, His sons and daughters. But we are more focused on laying up treasures in heaven than on laying them up here on the earth where decay will eventually take over.
o Because our focus is on the Kingdom of God all things are eventually added to us, without pressures that the world places on men. It’s called sweatless victory.

• The world says “Have it your way……!”
o In the Kingdom of God there is a time and a purpose for everything and in the fullness of time those things that are for us come to us effortlessly.

• The world says, “Insist on getting what you want, when you want it and how you want it.”
o In the Kingdom we listen to what the Father is releasing to us at the time. We simply do what we see Him doing and say what we hear Him saying.

• When the world says, “It’s over.”……
o in the Kingdom it’s just beginning, and God is about to do His best work.

• The world looks at calamities, chaos, shortages and other kinds of trouble with a sense of dread.
o God often ushers in His greatest blessings in the midst of calamities, chaos, shortages and other kinds of trouble, so in the Kingdom while the world is panicking we have an increasing sense of eager anticipation.

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