Lectionary Reflection: The Reign of Christ

By Carol James

Sunday, November 25

2 Samuel 23:1-7; Revelation 1:46-48; John 18:33-37

I’d like to think I’m not the only person who’s a little puzzled by what we’re observing this Sunday. The Reign of Christ comes with so many images of kingly splendor and power, which – well, is that what we really want from the divine? Do we really want to designate the place where we live in harmony with God’s generous love as a kingdom? Didn’t Jesus himself repudiate the notion of his role as one of power and majesty? What’s going on here?

I am the Alpha and the Omega, says the Lord God, who was and who is and who is to come… On this, the last Sunday of our liturgical year, we celebrate the splendor of salvation, the magnificence of the love that reached down to us through all ages and reaches out to all still. We can imagine what it might look like if smaller kingdoms and more petty loyalties were dissolved. We can look past leaders who demand our obedience to support their own agenda, to a shrewd and affectionate shepherd who guides us past danger and into our own deepest truths.

That’s most certainly not a kingdom of this world. Yet can we see it moving behind the shapes of what is, and what we fear to come? Does it gain more strength and substance, the more we love it, the more we name it, the more we seek to embody it in our daily actions?

Carol James has been part of the cathedral community for over a decade. She has served as a co-mentor in the Education for Ministry (EfM) program. She currently leads the evening prayer providers in the Jail Ministry and is a cathedral staff member.

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