Pause

Little stories. Illustrations. Vignettes. All intended to crack the door to just a little more understanding.

Jesus offered a lot of these kinds of openings. He still does. Look to see what kind of new light might brighten your understanding just now.

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Listen

Thus says the Lord God: I myself will take a sprig from the lofty top of a cedar; I will set it out. I will break off a tender one from the topmost of its young twigs; I myself will plant it on a high and lofty mountain. On the mountain height of Israel I will plant it, in order that it may produce boughs and bear fruit, and become a noble cedar. Under it every kind of bird will live; in the shade of its branches will nest winged creatures of every kind. All the trees of the field shall know that I am the Lord. I bring low the high tree, I make high the low tree; I dry up the green tree and make the dry tree flourish. I the Lord have spoken; I will accomplish it.

Ezekiel 17:22-24

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Think

Okay, think for a second. What is the most beautiful thing you have ever seen? It can be a person, place, painting, picture, animal. Anything. Are you imagining it? Now imagine what you think the Kingdom of God looks like. What do you see? Is it more beautiful? Is it colorful and full of faces?

The prophet Ezekiel gives us an image here of what the Kingdom of God looks like. We find the Kingdom of God pictured as a tree, growing high upon a mountain top. This tree is noble and bears fruit. Perhaps the most beautiful description is here: “Under it every kind of bird will live; in the shade of its branches will nest winged creatures of every kind.” To me, this is the ultimate image of what the Kingdom of God looks like. Everyone is welcomed and accepted into the Kingdom of God. There are no exceptions. All have the opportunity to come into this Kingdom and find refuge with God. What a great feeling it is to know that no matter what, God will always love you and give you shelter in the Kingdom. All of God’s children included within the Kingdom is the most beautiful image I can imagine.

Sarah Briggs

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Pray

God, thank you for your love and your shelter. Thank you for your acceptance and your forgiveness. Help me to spread the promise of your Kingdom to all that I meet. Amen.

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Go

Go now with your eyes watching,
Watching for the unfolding of God's words,
Words that give light,
Words that bring understanding
To even the most simpleminded.

Inspired by Psalm 119:130

Sarah Briggs

Sarah Briggs is a student at the Gardner-Webb School of Divinity. She also works at her alma mater, Wingate University, as the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship intern. She enjoys laughter and good coffee, watching television shows on Netflix, and spending time with her family.

Loxodonta

Clay Mottley

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