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Kingdom Practice 2: Noticing the Kingdom

By March 17, 2014Uncategorized
Practice week 2

Practice week 2

Kingdom Practice
Week 2

Introduction

This week, we are practicing noticing where the kingdom of God is manifest.  “To notice” means to perceive, become aware of, or acknowledge acquaintance with.  Noticing the kingdom of God is the first step to seeking the kingdom of God (Mt 6:33).  The kingdom of God can be sought after in our ordinary moments, daily routines, and day-to-day relationships.  But so often, in our busyness and constant movement, or in our sin and inattention, we fail to see it.

Starting each day with a prayer and then ending each day by writing down the ways in which you saw the kingdom of God in that particular day – whether in a person, a set of circumstances, a moment, or a place – allows you to become increasingly aware of the ways in which God’s kingdom is already apparent in our world, and the ways in which you can begin to participate in it.

Noticing

As you practice noticing this week, remember Jesus’ promise:  “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for.  Keep on seeking, and you will find.  Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks, receives.  Everyone who seeks, finds.  And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”  (Mt 7:7-8)

Here is one way to engage in the practice of noticing:

Pray.  Each morning when you first wake up, pray this simple prayer: God, please give me eyes to see and ears to hear Your Kingdom today.
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Read.  Allow God to speak about the Kingdom through the Scripture listed below using the Lectio Divina practice – read once, then sit silently for a minute and listen for the words or phrases that stand out to you; read a second time, ask God what area of your life these words or phrases relate to, and listen for two minutes; read a third time, ask God if there is an invitation or next step related to the words or phrases, and listen for two minutes.
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Write.  Each night before bed, take a few minutes to write down where you saw God’s kingdom during your day.  When you are done, express your gratitude to God for opening your eyes to his kingdom.

Daily Scripture Readings

Monday:  Matthew 13:33
Tuesday:  Matthew 13:44-46
Wednesday:  Matthew 13:47-52
Thursday:  Matthew 18:23-35
Friday:  Mark 4:26-29
Saturday:  Mark 4:30-32

Additional Resources

Book:  Living in Christ’s Presence: Final Words on Heaven and the Kingdom of God, Dallas Willard,

Video:  The Kingdom of God, teaching by Dallas Willard

Videos: The Kingdom of God.  A compelling (and fun) 3 minute explanation…

Join the discussion 8 Comments

  • Allison says:

    Thank you SO much for sharing these resources. I LOVED learning a new way to read and digest the Bible last week and am excited to see what this week brings. I appreciate your generosity in making this available to people who don’t live nearby and can’t attend in person!

    • Aaron Niequist says:

      Allison, great to hear that you are a part of this journey with us! Gods Kingdom is not bound by geography. Many blessings to you…

  • Tucker says:

    Man has this been good for me to process through. I’ve thought a lot about the kingdom but actually seeing it in my life, whew! I’m just not sure where the kingdom is in my everyday life. But the search is probably like looking for my nose. I’ll keep seeking to find the everpresent kingdom and live in it more.

  • Aaron Niequist says:

    Personally, I’ve been seeing God in my two year old son…when I pick him up from pre-school. As soon as he sees me, his eyes light up and he RUNS to me in joy and excitement. And it makes me think of the Father of the Prodigal son RUNNING with joy to the one he loves… Which makes me wonder: “What if the Kingdom of God is like a child running into the arms of his Father?” And what if God is as glad to see me as my son is to see me? What if God loves me that much…or more?!?!

  • Deb says:

    What if the Kingdom of God is not something really big and obvious, but the quiet assurance that Jesus is mine. Mine. He came looking for me, loves me dearly, carries me. Me. I am His and He is mine.

  • Show message history
    Thomas Merton wrote “At the center of our being is . . . a point or spark which belongs entirely to God. . .It is like a pure diamond, blazing with the invisible light of heaven. It is in everybody, and if we could see it we would see these billions of points of light coming together in the face and blaze of a sun that would make all the darkness and cruelty of life vanish completely…I have no program for this seeing. It is only given. But the gate of heaven is everywhere.”
    I’m a high school English teacher, and yesterday morning my students began giving presentations. One of my quietest girls sought me out before class and explained to me how she was up late the night before working on her group’s project, how her computer had crashed, and now a good portion of the work was lost. “Even though we’re not presenting until tomorrow—“ she told me, her words quiet, but somehow confident and firm “I wanted to let you know it was my fault the project isn’t finished yet.” And my eyes got a little watery- because this quiet student was both meek and bold in the best sense of both of those words. Her “light”—her humble confidence– helped open heaven’s gate and give me a glimpse of the Kingdom.

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