Christ’s is a kingdom where people are worth more than sparrows – but where even sparrows are cared for and flowers are well-dressed. “So don’t worry!” Christ says. “I will tend to your needs. You just seek my kingdom. Seek me first, tend to others, and tell them about me. I’ll tend to your needs.”

But that seems a lot easier when things are going well, doesn’t it? With a well-stocked fridge, over-flowing pantry, and a regular paycheck coming in.

Yet it was mostly common, poor folk who followed Christ.

Among the crowd who listened to the Sermon on the Mount, we would certainly have found widows barely getting by, neglected orphans, farmers whose crops had failed, fishermen with empty nets, and the blind, crippled, and lame – reduced to begging in the streets.

Yet the Lord told even them not to worry because their Father knew what they needed. “Don’t worry about these things,” he said. “Your needs will be met.”

And the Lord told even them to tend to his kingdom.

“Trust me,” he said, “even when things are bad. I’ll take care of you. But you tend to my kingdom.”

“Give to the needy and help others,” Christ was saying. “Share fish from your catch, vegetables from your garden. Help the blind and lame get around. No matter how poor you are, you can still help others.

Whether we have little or much, we can still care for others.

As parents barely getting by, we can meet our children’s needs the best we can, and shower them with love. If our fishing nets are empty, we can share our fruits and vegetables. Or when our crops fail, our pay gets cut or just plain disappears, we can still be about the Father’s business – reaching out and encouraging in some way.

I can’t imagine what it’s like to live in constant poverty, with no way out, and I don’t want to make light of such real and desperate plights. But I know the Lord is still saying to all Christ-followers everywhere, “I’ll tend to you. You just tend to my work. Caring for your family. Loving your neighbors. Loving me with all that is within you.

And telling everyone who will listen about a different kind of kingdom. A kingdom with values turned right side up. Where God values people more than sparrows. But where even the sparrows are cared for, and the lilies dress ever so elegantly. Because the Father sees and never forgets.

Whether you live in a hut or in a mansion, are you tending to God’s kingdom work? The kingdom, that according to the world, is totally upside down. But where everything is really the right way?

How do you show others the kingdom of everything turned right side up?

See the birds of the sky, that they don’t sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns. Your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you of much more value than they…? Why are you anxious about clothing? I tell you that even Solomon in all his glory was not dressed like one of these… Therefore don’t be anxious… Your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things… But seek first God’s Kingdom, and his righteousness; and all these things will be given to you as well.

Matthew 6:26-33 WEB

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IMAGES:
1ST: Jesus teaching by LUMO Project on FreeBible Images.org. 2ND: Bird by Good News Productions on FreeBibleImages.org. 3RD: birds on fence by Santa3 on Pixabay.

19 thoughts on “Sharing Christ’s Kingdom

  1. You are so right, Sheila. In the kingdom of God, the values ARE turned right side up. As the years have passed, I’ve grown to appreciate just HOW right God’s values are–that trusting is far superior to worrying, giving is far superior to receiving, surrender is far superior to independence, etc. (NOT that I live by his values perfectly, but a life of relationship and experience with him have certainly taught me much.)

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    1. I love the wisdom I always find in your comments (as well as your blog posts), Nancy. Trust is far superior. And much simpler, more blessed, and more productive. Yet we do seem to sometimes prefer worrying or trying to take of things on our own. How foolish we are at times. But like you, through the years, I find trust gets easier. We have all the Lord’s past provision, miracles, and providence to remember and bolster our faith!! God bless.

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  2. I love that quote by Mother Teresa. As Americans, we often think the only thing that matters is the big thing, the showy thing that accomplishes a lot. But the daily working for the kingdom, loving others as Jesus loves us, reaching out to those who are less fortunate–and there are ALWAYS so many less fortunate–gives us a sense of how He chooses to use us. He doesn’t need us to do His work–He invites us to come along for His blessing in our lives as well. Thanks for this, Sheila.

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    1. So true, Dayle! Americans do like to do everything big. We forget that lots of little things add up to a lot. And that one by one we can make a difference and show his love. Let’s count it a blessing that he does let us work along with him. What a privilege!!

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    1. Yes Mimi, it can. I remember a mission trip we made years ago to Mexico. The people were so poor. But they gave so readily and generously. They were an inspiration that I still remember afer all the years. I pray the Lord will make me like that. Whether rich or poor, give me a generous heart!

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  3. In Bolivia, I went to meet two girls and their mothers whom I sponsored at the time. The one mother and her two year old walked for 3 hours, then took a 16 hour bus ride…just to see me. Smiles never left their sun- and wind-burned faces….and then, when they left me to begin the long journey home, there in the middle of the city, the mother whipped off her huge sarape around her back, opened it up and pulled out a hat and a purse they had brought for me. Absolutely awe-inspiring and filled me with tears of love and gratitude. Priceless.

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    1. Such an inspiring story Heather! We have it so easy and yet sometimes whine (at least I do). My husband often uses the illustration in preaching of saying that God wants us to hold “things” with our fingertips. So we can give them up easily. And hold people in a full embrace, to always keep them close to heart. I think this is what people like this woman have learned! Priceless indeed!!

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  4. So true Ai! We spent a few months in Mexico helping a missionary there, and saw the same thing. People with so little and who have so much. They put me to shame. I think a big part of showing how real Christ’s kingdom is lies in this. Until we lose our grasp on these material things, how can we show the pull of the his kingdom? Thanks so much for sharing. Your perspective is invaluable!

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    1. Yes Tom, it is. Things get tough some times. (At least for most of us they do.) Yet we have so much. I’m often reminded of one of my heroines, Betsy ten Boom, Corrie’s sister. There in a nazi prison camp, she realized how much better off she as a prisoner was than her captors. The guards were the ones who needed pity, not she and Corrie. They had nothing, yet had everything! Thanks for sharing.

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  5. I’ve been on missions trips in different parts of the third world. My early childhood was in a third world country before we moved to the U.S. Though we weren’t among the poorest, I could understand even as a young child that life wasn’t always financially easy. But what I have noticed is that some of the most generous people I have met are the ones who have little. I sat in a small hut with a family, who didn’t have much, sharing a meal with them. And they gave me twice the servings they had for themselves. It was convicting to realize how much I have, and how little of it I share with others.

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    1. Thanks Ai, for this insightful input. We saw that too, during a short term in Mexico. I don’t think I’ve even seen such generous people. So little, yet they gave so liberally. That gave me a better perspective on how to use what I’ve got!

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    2. So true Ai! We spent a few months in Mexico helping a missionary there, and saw the same thing. People with so little and who have so much. They put me to shame. I think a big part of showing how real Christ’s kingdom is lies in this. Until we lose our grasp on these material things, how can we show the pull of the his kingdom? Thanks so much for sharing. Your perspective is invaluable!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks Ai, for this insightful input. We saw that too, during a short term in Mexico. I don’t think I’ve even seen such generous people. So little, yet they gave so liberally. That gave me a better perspective on how to use what I’ve got!

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