“No one can see the kingdom of God unless they’re born again.” John 3:3
Gifts are given to those who believe in God, and not just the ‘spiritual gifts’, but generic gifts, also. Some of these gifts involve the felt fact of God’s Presence through the light we and others experience as we trust God amid our interactions.
As believers, we can always expect to see God operating in our world, especially if we’re anticipating His Presence, as we belong to His Kingdom.
I commenced work early one morning. In this job I deliver chilled meals. Many of the people I deliver to are aged or infirmed or otherwise vulnerable. My first delivery was to a gentleman who told me he was about to have one of his legs surgically removed. God spoke to me: “Nice having two legs, isn’t it?”
Next stop was to a place in the same suburb, but it was ten minutes away, and I thought the GPS was wrong, as it occasionally is. But I had faith and was led to the right place. The stench of cigarette smoke. I thanked God that I quit over a decade ago, but appreciated the kindness extended to me by this new customer.
Sometime later I was delivering to a couple in their nineties. At one point, he went to step backwards, stumbled and fell… into my arms. A reflex action. They were very thankful, as he would surely have seriously hurt himself. Praised God I was in the right place and time.
Later still I arrived at another regular customer’s house and, on learning she had just turned ninety, I congratulated her. Having a headache, she offered some paracetamol, which I welcomed. We’ve had several ‘pastoral’ interactions, this another. One of my final deliveries involved a new customer who shared that her 56-year-old son was dying of cancer. On parting I said, “I’ll be praying for you,” to which she replied, “Oh, bless you.” I said, “God bless,” and she said, “God bless you, too.” It’s amazing how many believers I meet in this job. Divine appointments.
My final delivery involved a lady who didn’t know the previous woman, but the previous woman had overheard this lady talking about our service. I mentioned the challenges facing this woman, and the lady I was delivering to said she, too, would pray for her.
It was only eight hours, but there were significant moments where I was conscious I was in the Kingdom of God as I worked. Too many God-incidences not to be aware.
Now, I know that not all days are like the above account, and some days and entire seasons, it seems, God ‘hides’ Himself from us.
One thing as believers we can always thank God for, is we can see the Kingdom of God.
Life in the Kingdom of God is a long series of arbitrary moments of epiphany. Wherever God breaks through into our world, believers may see and thereby be encouraged, because the foundation of their faith is found to be self-evident; real in the reality of life.