I left last night so grateful to be a part of a community that doesn’t just learn about the teaching of Jesus but longs to put his words into practice. After offering our whole selves to God in song and reflecting on Jesus’ words in Matthew 6, Gail and Bill led in a time of praying for our broken world. I found this time of prayer a beautiful lead-in to the time of teaching from Meredith and Curtis.

Meredith helped us identify the places we long for healing in our world. Placing our hands on our stomachs each of us said, “I am hungry and thirsty for a world where…” and we held this space of hunger before God. Meredith explained that righteousness is not a characteristic of salvation or the freedom from guilt; righteousness is a relational word. It speaks of relationships that that function as God created them to function.

Broken relationships are all around us, but we struggle to do anything. We believe the lie that we cannot make a difference, or as Meredith explained, we think, “I can’t do anything. I am just…” But God is moving. He is working to mend what is broken in our world. As Dr. King said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” God’s redemptive work in the world is making things right, and his invitation to each of us is to join in his work.

Curtis then led us through our practice for the evening. We held one space of injustice, one place we hunger for righteousness, before God and we explored the broken relationships that led to the injustice. After identifying relationships, we looked at how these relationships break down in our own lives. Finally, we asked God to show us tangible ways we can join him in bringing righteousness to those close-to-home relationships this week.

This reflection on justice then led us to the table. If the arc of the universe truly bends toward justice, then the table and the sacrificial love it represents is the arc’s center point. Joining Jesus at the table, we now join him in his redemptive work in our four kingdom practices.

Kingdom Practices

  1. Holding injustice before God Every day this week, will you join us in holding injustice before God? You may choose to hold the specific injustice you identified before God each day, or perhaps as you see injustice around you, you will hold it before God as you move about your day. Pray for justice, and listen to God. Is he inviting you to join him in any way?
  2. I am hungry for a world… so I will… How can we join God in bringing righteousness to the relationships around us in tangible ways this week? This is doing the activities Curtis led us to identify last night.
  3. Connect with an organization committed to bringing justice. There are organizations all over Chicagoland making a difference in the areas of our hunger and thirst for righteousness. Spend some time researching these organizations and find a way to join them this week.
  4. Join us at 5:15 in B100. We will continue to meet in groups next week to share our experiences with the practices. These groups are a great way to process what God has been doing in you during the week, encourage others, and be supported as we journey together. We would love to have you join us.