I won't give up on us

My friend wrote recently that she had been reading about the Lord’s Prayer over on the blog of Andrew Arndt.  So I clicked, out of curiosity and read some of Andrew’s stuff on the Lord’s Prayer when I remembered an article I read last year on this prayer that we know so well.
So I dug up my research from the paper I had written on the Lord’s prayer and sure enough I found the article written by NT Wright entitled “They Kingdom Come: Living the Lord’s Prayer.”  It was a short article and in all honesty, a bit of a cop out for a scholarly article on my passage, but it radically changed how I thought about these words that flow so freely from my mouth when prompted, almost rehearsed. (Okay more than almost…)
Wright dwells on the line of the prayer where we ask “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”  Wright says that to pray Thy Kingdom come is to see the world as the Lord sees it, with the love the Creator has for his creation and to see the utter brokenness and woundedness that the world lives in today.  Then we take this love and this grief and see how that love and grief has existed before–in the death of Jesus on the cross.  With that image in our minds we pray, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.  We are praying for the redemption of the world and for the radical uprooting of evil and the final marriage of heaven and earth – for God to be all in all before our eyes.
But if we are going to pray this, we need to ask the question, Are we willing to be Kingdom-bearers?  Are we willing to act as healed healers rather than broken bullies?  Are we willing to sing the song of redemption loud enough for the world to join in?  To fully live as Jesus created us?
We are all broken.  We have all fallen short of the glory of God and been dealt bad hands.  We have suffered from the evils of this world, the question is, how do we lead from that brokenness?  How do we give up the idea of perfect leaders and take up the idea that we can lead and bring healing because we have experienced healing?
With all those questions in view – are we willing to pray this over familiar prayer and truly ask for the Kingdom of Heaven to come here, to meet us in this world.  Are we willing to lead the way in this transformation?  Are we willing to be Kingdom bearers in our everyday lives.
I’ll tell you one thing, after reading this NT Wright, I find it harder and harder to take this challenge that Jesus handed out in Matthew.  Every time I pray that prayer I think about whether or not I am really up for this challenge.  What if we were to fervently pray for the Kingdom to come and for His will to be done?  What kind of church could we have then?

if you ever wonder if you are in my mind

My new favorite picture of Bizzy.
I wrote a blog a while back about how I thought we needed more females like Mindy Kaling. I wrote about how I desperately wanted more people in the public eye that were better. That I wanted more people that I could point to for my nieces and goddaughter to want to be like. That I could say to them, “like these women, not Ke$ha.”
When I was home for Christmas I realized something important. My nieces and goddaughter, they don’t want to be like Ke$ha. They aren’t looking for their role models on TV and in magazines. They are looking at me. On Christmas Eve, we were all rushing around trying to get ready for church. I was in my room getting ready when I heard the door open just a crack. I look over and see a tiny little eye in the crack, my 6 year old niece, Benny. I motioned for her to come in and she burst through the door, all dressed for church. She twirled around in her dress and looked up at me for approval. I told her she looked very pretty and asked her if she needed something. She looked up and in her shy little voice that means she wants something she said, “can I watch you get ready?”
Now, I wish that I could say I was a star aunt and said yes. That I let her watch me put my make up on and we had one of those Parent Trap moments where I pretend to put blush on her. But for whatever reason, I was annoyed at something else and I told her no and sent her back upstairs.
Looking back at the moment I realized I missed out on a major Tia-Benny moment. I missed out on a precious time between us because of whatever was bugging me. When you only get to see your family 3-4 times a year you have to make those times count, and that night, I did not.
Now, our whole Christmas wasn’t like that and we had plenty of Tia-Benny times to warm my heart but I will never forget the one moment I turned her down. (just like the fact that the goddaughter remembers the ONE time in 4 years that I forgot to pick her up from school…).
But the thing I learned most from this last trip home is how much Benny and the goddaughter look up to me and see what I’m doing. Their eyes catch everything, and some day Bizzy’s will too. The question is, am I living a life that I would want them to follow? Am I being an example of a women that I want them to be?
It’s not whether or not I am a role model to them, it’s am I being the modeling the right life?