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Practicing Heaven on Earth

Practicing Heaven on Earth

May/Discipline

26 May 2010

One day holy Brigit needed to attend a gathering of the people for a compelling practical reason, and she sat in her chariot, which was drawn by two horses. As she sat in the vehicle, she practiced on earth the life of heaven, as was her custom, by contemplative meditation, and prayed to her Lord.

- Cogitosus, LIfe of St. Brigit (Irish, 7th century)

And gazing at him, all who sat in the council saw that his face was like the face of an angel.

- Acts 6.15

Stephen was a citizen of the Kingdom of God. He is described as having been filled with the Spirit, a man of great reputation, and brandishing the Word of God with power. To many he must have seemed a visitor from another world. More specifically: a citizen of another realm. Which he was.

I'm always struck by Stephen's comment at the moment of his death, about seeing the Lord Jesus "standing" at the right hand of God. I don't think he was surprised to see, with the eye of faith, His exalted Savior and King, reigning at the side of His Father and ours. It was the "standing" part that seems to have surprised him. Perhaps he had not seen that before. Is this the way martyrs are welcomed home?

Like Brigit, Stephen took seriously his citizenship in the Kingdom of heaven, and the discipline of "practicing" the Kingship of Jesus that entailed. He had learned to set his mind on the things that are above, where Christ is seated in the heavenly places (Col. 3.1-3). He was able to view his experiences, and all the happenings of history, from the vantage point of the throne of Christ, where he knew what it is to be seated with Him there (Eph. 2.6). He practiced the life of heaven on earth, and the result was purity of life, power for witness, and courage and grace in the face of life's ultimate threat.

Would you use that phrase - practicing the life of heaven on earth - to describe your own walk with the Lord? Have you learned the disciplines of prayer and meditation well enough to enable you to transcend this mundane realm and walk among saints and angels, in the presence of the God of glory? Would it make a difference if you did?

Today in ReVision: The Limits of Government - The hard reality is setting in, but few believe it.

This Week's Download: A Personal Rule

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T. M. Moore, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
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