Well here I am in Los Angeles for the Justice Conference. In looking through my notes I found this – which I wrote 10 years ago. My dream has widened a little but in reading what I had written a thrill overcame me because I am still dreaming!
“I dream of a day when all the people of the earth will have a chance to flourish. When all, regardless
of their background, will have the opportunity, through education and hard work, to enjoy the fruit of their labour. But I dream also of a day when those who are ungifted or disadvantaged will be provided for.
A day when…
A day when the scourge of natural disaster, disease and famine will be mitigated by caring acts from of the rest of humanity.
A day when those who cannot provide for themselves will be cared for, but all who are able will have the opportunities to provide for their families with dignity.
A day when true prosperity will not be seen in terms of personal gain but will be seen in terms of the overall health and prosperity of the family, the community and ultimately the whole of humanity.
A day when the wealth of nations will be judged not by economic turnover but will be judged by the prosperity of the poorest inhabitants.
A day when those who have obtained wealth through skill, wisdom, hard work or simply good fortune will be anxious to invest their wealth into other people so that there will be an overall well-being in the earth.
If not, and unless the current trend is reversed, I fear that lust for power and natural propensity to greed will result in wealth being controlled by fewer and fewer people until ultimately the resources of the whole earth could be ruled by one man and those who serve him.
Call me idealistic; call my dreams impossible and unrealistic if you must. But you cannot stop me working and striving, with all the strength and ability that God has given me, towards that goal.
I may never see that dream come true. I certainly cannot achieve even a fraction of it all on my own. But what if the whole Church of Jesus was equally motivated by the same dream?
We could turn the world upside down (or right way up) in a way that the early church could not have imagined. What if this is what it means by the sons of God “coming into their own”?
Religion would be transformed from adherence to rules into caring for the orphan and the widow. Purity of lives, unspotted and uncontaminated by the worldly values of greed and power would produce a church ready for the return of the King!
The return of the King
Eventually, with the rule of Jesus, my dreams will become a reality. There will be no more sickness, poverty or distress. No more need; no more slavery; the abolition of poverty and suffering.
But are we going to wait passively for that day – we might wait all our lifetimes – or are we going to work now towards that goal with all the strength God gives us? Are we going to sit around giving lip service to seeking His Kingdom or are we going to bring something of His Kingdom into the world around us right here and now?”