Pause

Obsession. That is a very strong word which describes the way someone or something can dominate a person's life. To be obsessed is to have almost no control over your feelings.

The reign of Christ is not that way. It is an invitation accepted to a way of life, not something that is forced upon us.

You are invited now to find your way into Christ's reign. Accept the invitation gladly!

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Listen

Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.”

John 18:33-36

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Think

In the 1990s there was an experiment in Tucson, Arizona, called the Biosphere, a three-acre greenhouse with groves of trees and even a simulated ocean! Two “expeditions” of people lived there for several years to learn if humans could survive in a completely controlled environment. There were many successes but also many strange puzzles to solve. For instance, they couldn't grow pears. The pears would begin to develop but eventually would clunk to the ground. No one knew why; all the trees were droopy. Can you guess why they were so weak?

It's because there was no wind. There was no force to push them. And without pressure from the wind, they couldn't grow strong and develop endurance.

Jesus said that his kingdom is unseen, like the wind. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean that it’s not real. His kingdom has power and continues to move the lives of people every day. Are you more rooted more in the reality of the world than in the reality of the kingdom?

Brent McDougal

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Pray

God of the universe, you are the reality underneath reality. You are in charge today, not me. May your Spirit strengthen me as I serve you today. Amen.

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Go

Blessings abound where-e're Christ reigns:
The prisoners leap to lose their chains,
The weary find eternal rest,
And all who suffer want are blessed.

Attributed to John Hatton

Brent McDougal

Brent McDougal lives in Dallas, Texas, and is pastor at Cliff Temple Baptist Church.

Turn Your Eyes

Ken Medema

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