The Kingdom of God Is What You Really Want

In the tapestry of existence, where the divine meets the mundane, there lies an invocation, a prayer uttered through the ages: "Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." These words, resonating from the lips of countless believers, encapsulate a profound longing, a yearning for the Kingdom of God to permeate every facet of human existence. But what does this Kingdom entail? How does its manifestation translate into our daily lives?

Understanding the Kingdom: Where the King Reigns

A kingdom is wherever the king is in charge. A kingdom is where things are done the king’s way. The kingdom of God is where things are done God’s way. It is a realm where the divine order prevails. What is the way of God? Jesus showed us exactly how things are when they are done God’s way because Jesus is the exact representation of the Father (Hebrews 1:3). Jesus told us that the foundation of everything done God’s way is “love.”

The Essence of the Kingdom: Righteousness, Peace, and Joy

Paul described the kingdom of God in his letter to the Romans:

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. [Romans 14:17 (ESV)]

Righteousness is “rightness” with God and the world. It’s where priorities are straight and our view of life, the universe, and everything lines up with God’s.

Peace is inner tranquility that is undisturbed by external circumstances. You may be elated and happy. Happiness is a wonderful feeling, but it dissipates like mist. You may be struggling against physical, financial, emotional, or spiritual difficulties. But to live in the kingdom of God is to have peace in the middle of your struggles because you know Jesus forgives and walks with you on your journey.

Joy is engagement in what you are doing. You can be happy and joyful, sad and joyful, grieving and joyful, anything and joyful. Joy is being present in the moment, fully engaged in what you are doing along with the sense that you are doing the right thing at the right time. Joy is when you are neither dragged out of the present by regret for the past nor dragged out of the present by anxiety about the future.

The Kingdom of God Is What You Really Want

Most of the things we spend time doing and money buying are not the end goal. They are a means to an end. If you buy some camping equipment, you don’t want the equipment. You want the feeling you have when you are camping. When you decide to go out to dinner with a friend, what you really want is that feeling you get when you are having a wonderful dinner with friends. Consider the possibility that most of what you want can be boiled down to righteousness, peace, and joy. Doesn’t that sum up everything nicely?

The Invisible Kingdom of God Must Be Embraced with Faith

Jesus, in Mark 10:15, says plainly that we can only live in this righteousness, peace, and joy that we want if we accept the kingdom of God like a little child. Trust in Jesus is the prerequisite for entry into the kingdom of God.

Jesus made it clear that the kingdom of God isn’t something that you can point to like a city. Instead, it shows itself quietly, amidst the everyday occurrences of life. The Kingdom is within us, intertwined with our very being, shaping our thoughts, actions, and aspirations. It is in the inclinations of our hearts and in the way we treat other people.

The Kingdom of God is Now and Not Yet

As we pray for God’s kingdom to come, we find ourselves in both a before and after place. Jesus said that the kingdom of God is at hand. It’s now. Whenever anyone is smitten by the love of Christ and turns themselves over to Jesus as king, the kingdom of God has arrived. But we also know that there will come a time in the future when King Jesus will be revealed in all His glory. At that time, the Kingdom of God will be complete because every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord.

We live in the tension of the "now and not yet," where the Kingdom is both present and future—a reality to be experienced in the here and now, yet fully realized in the culmination of time.

Your Kingdom Come… That Is to Say, “Your Will Be Done on Earth As It Is in Heaven

As we pray the Lord's Prayer, we are praying that our desires align with God’s will, to seek His Kingdom and His righteousness above all else. Our prayers become a means by which the Kingdom comes into every aspect of our lives and the world around us.

The Living, Growing Kingdom — In Me and Through Me

The Kingdom's coming begins within us, as God reigns in our hearts and transforms our lives with his truth and grace. But it doesn’t stop there. As we live out the Kingdom of God, we are the means by which God extends the kingdom of grace and truth that He has brought about through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Through us, God’s kingdom extends to our communities, our families, and our churches—becoming a beacon of hope and light in a world shrouded in darkness.

The Call of God to Our Spirits

In the crazy mixture of pain and pleasure, good and evil, life and death that make up our earthly life, the Kingdom of God calls to us — a reality infused with righteousness, peace, and joy. Something inside of us resonates with the possibility of such a life. We experience the Kingdom now, in part, at times. One day we will experience the Kingdom of God fully.

We keep on praying with all God's people throughout space and time since the coming of Jesus Christ, “Your kingdom come. Your will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven.”