Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

November 24, 2019

I was kicking around ideas for the homily for this weekend, the Feast of Christ the King – officially: The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, as I always do in preparation for a weekend.  I thought about all the people we raise to “kingship” in our lives, the ones who we know—or at least we count on—who will make us happy and proud and strong, starting in our youngest days with our parents. We assume know everything until we realize they don’t; that they will bail us out when we get into trouble, until they won’t.  And it works the other way, too. We are certain our children are better and smarter than any other kids (My daughter would never do that!) until they demonstrate otherwise.  We are confident our politicians will save our country, and our doctors will always be able to fix our problems, until they let us down.  The perfect lovers who are not so perfect after all, our dream job that becomes our nightmare job.

So, I was thinking, as we come to those realizations, when others fail us or other kingdoms collapse, then we will finally make Christ our King.  When our fairytale worlds collapse, we will come to the truth that this Feast proclaims:  that Christ is our King; that Christ is the only one in our life who will never disappoint or fail us or ever let us down.    

But then I realized that I got it all wrong.  Well, not all wrong; I got the last part right, at least.  Christ is our King.  But my logic of how I got there is what is flawed.  Because this logic says that we decide if and when we come under that Kingship and therefore we somehow can choose Christ as our King.  But it is not our choice, is it?!  That’s where my logic was flawed; that’s why I scrapped the whole thing.   We do not give Christ power in our lives, Christ already has it.  That choice, that decision has already been made.  Not by us but by God.

Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, the first born of creation does not need our affirmation of His power.  The One in whom and for whom all was created—both in heaven and on earth, the One who holds all things together, the One who has delivered us from the power of darkness, the One who is the head of the church, this ONE does not need us to acknowledge his Kingship for it to exist. It is whether we like it or not; it exists whether we acknowledge it or not; it is real whether we believe it or not.

All the drama and poetry and beauty of this Feast can be summed up in that simple truth:  God doesn’t need us to affirm God’s supremacy.  We don’t get to choose to come under Christ’s Kingship.  We already are.  The choice we have, and the only choice, is to acknowledge that truth.   We choose to live and form our lives around that truth, or not.  That’s our choice.

We can live in the denial of that truth until our incomplete, imperfect, kingdoms collapse around us, leaving us scrambling for the next King or Queen, the next power or nation or lover or truth to come our way.  Or we can live in the freedom of that Truth and then choose to build our kingdoms of this world—our relationships, our economy, our laws, our politics and our church—under the shadow of the only one who can save us, the only one who can promise, “Today you will be with me in paradise.”  - Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe.



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