Imagine if every idea ever had, just stayed that: an idea.
What if every thought never left being thought?
What if every concept never saw it’s way further to the finished project?
And what if every vision was never bought in to?
Ideas stay ideas unless they progress from a thought, or a concept, or a vision, to some kind of reality. They need embodiment, they need to take on flesh; they need incarnation.
In the opening chapter of the Gospel of John, we find these incarnational words about Jesus:
“So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.”
_ JOHN 1:14
God’s plan of restoring creation was no longer just an idea – it had become a reality. The plan had literally taken on “flesh and blood and moved into the neighbourhood.” Or as Paul would later put it in his letter to the Colossians,
“Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.”
Christ is the tangible, touchable, real incarnation of God’s redemptive plan, putting flesh on all the Divine ideas and prophecies of Israel’s history, bringing all of the invisible and ambiguous things of the Kingdom of God into reality:
Here. And. Now.
Yes, because as you might recall from part one, Jesus’ ministry and mission didn’t stop in the grave with Him. It rose with Him and was passed on to His followers, to continue going to the ends of the earth. As Christ-followers, we become an incarnation, embodiers of the Kingdom agenda to make all things new.
Which brings me back to my opening thought. Imagine if every idea ever had, just stayed that: an idea.
Now, let’s take that thought and team it up with this movement of Jesus.
God’s redemptive work in the world isn’t just an idea anymore, but it’s movement could stall at you. Will you, or will you not, choose to further embody this movement of the Kingdom?
Planting a church means embodying the Kingdom of God; making the invisible, visible. Anytime a group of people gather in a community to embody the agenda of the Kingdom of God, we have a church, and when it’s viewed like that, a church is always a good thing. The world needs more of these incarnational gatherings – gatherings of people who are being a visible sign of the invisible God in their communities, cities and ultimately all of creation.