Jesus spoke a lot about the kingdom of God and we find that His person can’t be separated from it.
He spoke about how He is the bread of life and the living water. He is the vine to which we are connected, the well from which we drink, the door through which we enter. He did not just come to bring us or show us those things, but He IS those things.
Therefore, our experiences of the glimpses of God’s Kingdom in this world really depend on how much we are looking for and finding Jesus. We are called to “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness…” (Matthew 6:33) – to seek Jesus; to be living alert to the Kingdom of God… and it is all around.
One Ignatian tradition is to say of all things, especially when you aren’t feeling God’s presence and especially when it’s hard, whether it be when you bite into a mealy apple or when your world is falling apart to continually say, “Jesus is here.” It’s a spiritual exercise people do to train their minds and hearts to look for where Jesus is, even in the hard things, the unpleasant things and the excruciating things. He is there. The Kingdom is present. It is at hand, because Jesus is here.
That statement, “Jesus is here” is both a reassuring declaration and a willingness to look for Jesus and God’s Kingdom and it’s also a question that is asked of us, to say, “If Jesus is here, what are you going to do about it? How is it my responsibility to make that more apparent than it currently is? If He were physically here, what would He do? How would He respond or engage?”
That awareness of the Kingdom is all at once something that brings hope, grace and comfort, and also challenges us and propels us into action as ambassadors of God’s kingdom.
In your most challenging situation right now, how can you take a breath and say to yourself, “Jesus is here”?