This weekend we celebrate the Feast of Christ the King. In 21st Century NZ our reality of ‘Kingship’ and ‘Kingdoms’ is somewhat removed from former eras, but even today Jesus’ instruction is the same as when He walked on earth “Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s” (Mk 12:17). God wants to take primary place in our hearts and knows that we are most at rest when that is the case.
Recently at a weekday Mass, in the Gospel Jesus spoke about the Kingdom of God being among us, and Fr Paul reflected on how Jesus abides within us. That morning my mind had been busy playing host to some boisterous ‘stinking thinking’: the type that initially permeates through undetected, bringing a destructive toxicity that, when given full reign poisons both the head AND the heart. I can’t now remember the subject of my thinking but there was a demolition going on in my mind. When Fr Paul spoke about the Kingdom of God being in our hearts, I felt clear conviction that my mind and heart were not a dwelling place for God in that moment. It was the reality check I needed to ask God to forgive me and to help me set my thinking on a better pathway. There was no condemnation or sense of God being disappointed in me. It was simply a sharp clarity on where I was allowing my heart and mind to go. And in recognising it, there was a humbling sense of God’s forgiveness and letting me come to Him just as I am – wondering mind and all.
Today we ask ourselves, is God the King of MY heart? Is my heart a dwelling place for God? Am I alert to what thinking I allow my head to spend time on and how it is affecting my heart? As we head into Advent next weekend, maybe we can think about setting aside the coming Advent Season to allow God to take His rightful place in our heart, to come just as we are and to draw closer to Him.