The Kingdom always lies beyond us 1


The Kingdom is not only beyond or efforts: it is beyond our vision. We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is the Lord’s work. Nothing we do is complete, which is another way of saying that the Kingdom always lies beyond us. No sermon says all that should be said. No prayer fully expresses our faith. No confession brings perfection. No pastoral visit brings wholeness. No program accomplishes the Church’s mission. No set of goals and objectives includes everything. That is what we are about. We plant the seeds that one day will grow. We water seeds already planted knowing they hold future promise. We lay foundations that will need further development. We provide yeast that affects far beyond our capabilities. We cannot do everything and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that. This enables us to do something, and to do it very, very well. It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest. We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the Master Builder and the worker. We are workers, not master builders; ministers, no messiahs. We are prophets of a future that is no our own.

Oscar Romero
as quoted in Common Prayer: A liturgy for ordinary radicals
by Shane Claiborne, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, & Enuma Okoro
(Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan) 2010
reading for March 24, p. 194


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