This is part of a series of devotions reflecting on the lines of the Lord’s Prayer with an eye toward themes of justice and reconciliation. Explore more entries in this devotional series.
T his phrase—“your kingdom come”—focuses on desiring what God desires and collaborating with God to implement God’s kingdom in the midst of our racist kingdom. Desiring what God desires is a good way of using the power invested in us as human beings. As Christians, we are called to use our God-given power to relate with others in holiness and in love and to serve them in order to glorify God.
Racism operates through power that produces inequality. We experience racism in two ways. First, institutional racism through unjust religious, social, political, cultural, and economic institutions that segregate and abuse by benefiting some and impoverishing others because of different race or ethnicity. Second, individual racism, which comes from our pride and manifests in personal ideologies, values, and strategies to relate unholy, spiteful actions toward people who are different from us.
Desiring what God desires is a way to confess and repent of our pride and our racism; it is also a form of yielding to Jesus Christ’s lordship.
God’s kingdom reflects God’s unbiased, unbigoted, and unprejudiced character. It also reflects how God uses God’s power in a holy and just way as God relates with all human beings.
When we think and pray about racial justice and beloved community, it is an opportunity to ponder how we use our God-given power as individuals and as institutions. We need to invite the Holy Spirit to help us become aware of our bias and unfairness in relating with others at personal and corporate levels. After personal and corporate awareness of racism, we need to repent and confront it in order to display God’s kingdom wherever we go.
Prayer: Holy Spirit, bring racism awareness and repentance. Surprise us! Amen.
Rev. Dr. Pedro Agudelo
Rev. Dr. Pedro Agudelo serves as the president of the RCA’s Hispanic Council, as the chair of the Mission and Outreach Committee for Queens Classis, and as a pastor of Iglesia de Cristo la Roca in Queens Village, New York City. He has been married for 34 years to Estela, and they have four adult children.