Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Kingdom of God (03/12/09)
TITLE: Hear the Call of the Kingdom
By Jena Beecher
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I listened to him speak but heard Godís voice saying to go and share His love with all I meet. My heart raced and the room spun, I wanted to run home and pull the covers over my head. Why Lord, do you want me to go? I have no special skills. I just wanted to hear a good story, not go traipsing around the globe. Yet, I knew deep down that God wanted me to spread the good news of His salvation.
The questions flooded my mind. How could I take my children out of school to travel to the depths of the African jungle, villages along the Amazon, or Mideast deserts? Where would they go to school? What if we sell our home and become stranded living in a grass hut with a camel for a car? How would we ever learn another language well enough to preach much less ask for the nearest potty? How could we possibly afford to travel to the ends of the earth, we canít afford enough gas to get to the state line? The more questions that filled my mind, the more doubt took hold of my heart. Yet I heard his voice, saying, ďGo.Ē A battle raged within me.
I sat glued in my seat, trembling. Startling when I felt a tap on my shoulder, I hoped it was someone waking me from a dream. Instead, it was a saintly widow whispering in my ear. Her voice was soft and sweet yet her words rang loud, ďGo. Allow Him to lead you. Donít hold back.Ē I bolted for the nearest exit.
The doors flung open allowing the sunlight to blind me. Shielding my face from the brightness I stumbled out onto the sidewalk. Squinting, I slowly began to see again. I was overwhelmed by the view that lay before me. I dropped to my knees bowing before my Lord and all humanity.
The Kingdom of God . . . suddenly I could see as I had never seen before. I saw those He wanted to welcome into His Kingdom. I sobbed with grief at how I had avoided the very souls He so desperately longs to call His own. How did I miss it? I knew they needed Godís love yet I turned my back. I judged.
I prayed as each face came before me. First, I prayed for the clerk at the store who never takes time to look up except to share the latest gossip. In truth, she was deeply hurting and did not know Godís healing power. I felt the depth of His desire to fill her spirit with joy and love for others. Then I saw the family next door on whom, just last week, we called the police for being too loud. I now saw a battered wife struggling to protect her children from their fatherís alcoholism. Godís desire to bring this family out of their hurt and into his healing love overwhelmed me. I sobbed yet more.
As I scanned the cityscape before me, the faces came to mind, one after another. I saw my coworkers who I have not taken time to know. Jill who never meets deadlines, Ed who wiles away hours at his computer playing games or worse. Staci who works late every night with her young child locked in their apartment, alone. Conviction seared my heart. I never once stopped to pray for any of them. Now, I could do nothing but fervently pray. Although, I do not know their needs, God does. He so desperately wants to give them the riches of His Kingdom.
Lifting my eyes toward heaven, I raised my empty hands to my King and vowed to serve Him as never before. The battle that had raged within me moments ago, raged no more. I may not go far away to exotic lands, but here, in my hometown, is where I answer the call of the Kingdom.
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