I don’t think you could pray more dangerous words than these three: “Thy Kingdom Come.”
If we truly understood what we were saying, we would probably pause before inviting such upheaval through our door. This often overused and underestimated petition can only be answered by turning our lives upside down and inside out.
Let’s be honest. We don’t always greet God’s kingdom with delight. We want certain things in life, and we not only want them, but we know how, when, and where we want them.
I want my wife to be a joyful and committed supporter of my dreams. My children are now grown, but I still want them (and their spouses and their children) to appreciate the fact that they have been blessed with me!
I want my schedule to be unobstructed and predictable. I want my peers and neighbors to hold me in high esteem. I want the ministry initiatives I direct to be well received and successful.
I want the pleasures and entertainment I prefer to be available on-demand.
I don’t want to suffer. I don’t want to live without.
Have you ever stopped and listened to yourself? Does the soundtrack to your life sometimes sound like this? “I want, I want, I want...”
It’s humbling and embarrassing to admit, but a lot of the time, we just want our kingdom to come and our will to be done.
When there’s no larger kingdom to capture my allegiance, my life sadly becomes about what I want and how I can use other people as a vehicle to get what I want.
The simple prayer that Christ teaches us with “Thy Kingdom Come” is the antidote to a selfish and self-destructive life. Since sin starts with the heart, I’ll only live within the moral boundaries God has set when my heart desires God’s will more than it desires my own.
“Thy Kingdom Come” - these three simple words are words of surrender, words of protection, and words of freedom.
1. Pray Willingly. “Lord, I surrender to doing everything I do, saying everything I say, and choosing everything I choose for the sake of your kingdom and not mine.”
2. Pray Humbly. “Father, I am still tempted to think that I know better than you, so once again please protect me from my own foolishness.”
3. Pray Eagerly. “God, help me to love you above all else and my neighbor as myself, so I can experience the freedom that results when you break my bondage from me.”
And pray thankfully.
Only God’s transforming grace can produce this kind of prayer in your heart, and because of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, that grace is freely and generously available!
That’s what it means to pray “Thy Kingdom Come.”
Paul David Tripp
- In what ways have you pursued your own kingdom this week? What have the results been?
- In what ways have you pursued God's kingdom this week? What have the results been?
- What is God calling you to surrender to his kingdom this week?
- Why should you pray for humility this week? What do you need to be protected from?
- Why should you seek God's kingdom eagerly this week? What blessings have you experienced when you choose God's will over your own?