What is man that You should give him so much attention?
This was a question which perplexed King David:
I look at my micro-self and wonder,
Why do you bother with us?
Why take a second look our way?
Yet we’ve so narrowly missed being gods,
bright with Eden’s dawn light.
You put us in charge of your handcrafted world,
repeated to us your Genesis-charge . . .
Ps 8:4-6 (MSG)
God “bothers” with us for the rather complicated reason that from creation man was appointed and commissioned to be His personal representative and image bearer to all creation. In a manner similar to Christ, we have been destined, Paul says predestined in Rom. 8:29, from the creation of the universe to reveal God as Father and Creator.
In order for that to take place, He has provided a clear and relational way for us to have God’s authentic image restored. That image is already present, tattered, and distorted due to loss of the Mind of Christ.
In order for us to see His Kingdom, we are required to cease living in the past or the future. We escape into the past or plan carefully for the future without understanding the urgency to discover all that it means for us to fully embrace the NOW.
We may visit the past, recalling our failures that we not repeat them and remembering the faithfulness of God that we might trust His goodness. However, we cannot live there. We envision the future with hope — not a future of our own imagination, but one which is founded on the call and purposes of Father, however hidden and mysterious it may seem.
Taking away our escape mechanisms is not fun. Martha knew if “the Lord had been present (past)” her brother would not have died (See John 11). When pressed by the Lord for “present faith”, she responds in a manner similar to our own, “I know he will live in the resurrection (future).” The present can be painful and threatening, causing us to be increasingly uncomfortable.
Understanding and living like I am “the smallest kingdom” looks something like this:
- Christ seeks to govern who I am and what I do by the invisible influence and presence of Agape.
- He governs my human spirit because God is Spirit. The human spirit is the king of this smallest kingdom.
- Christ the King, governing our micro-kingdom requires us to govern effectively the other two members in our personal kingdom, our soul and our physical body. It is simply an application of His instruction to seek first His Kingdom!
We are to be salt, light, yeast, and manifest the Father’s person and image leading to the “kingdom of this would becoming the Kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ.” It is urgent that we “reign in life” over our own micro-kingdom in order for Christ to expand His reign.
We are challenged by this clear response from Mary, the mother of Jesus, one which we all need to apply with increasing urgency.
- Mary yields her physical body to the angel saying: Be it unto me according to your word! She is not in the past or the future, but responding in present, real time.
- Mary, as the king of her own small kingdom, then governs her own human soul magnifying the Lord God! She is bringing her entire person into the governing reality of Christ and His Agape embrace.
- Finally, her submission, which is her human spirit, speaks out in joy, expressing authentic rejoicing toward God offering heart, soul, mind, and strength. What she owns, she gives.
To know Him and know ourselves, we have to yield our personal sovereignty and give “all we have”. We give up our own kingdom, only for the Son to reconcile us to our authentic Father. By the Spirit, Father restores us to the now (encapsulating both past and future) as a new person. Dead, but somehow now alive like never before.