This also raises another important question; are we building the Kingdom or waiting for it to show up? Here, I will borrow language from my betters; Kingdom justice is both ‘now and not yet.’ We are not so much building the Kingdom as building for the Kingdom. Just as a musical instrument can be a work of craftsmanship or artistry in its own right, so too is the Church to be working for justice outright in the ‘now.’ Yet, as that same musical instrument, for all of its inherent beauty, cries out for a master musician to come and play; so too the justice the Church has brought about cries out for a time in the ‘not yet’ when the Master will come and bring justice of a deeper, fuller, and better sort.35 The justice that is effected within this age is a sign pointing to the Justice of the Coming Kingdom.
10) Christian Storytellers – If, then, we are to be signposts pointing towards hope, we will need to write new parables to tell the world. The Church desperately needs adepts in the arts. Not just any art will do; we need art that avoids the twin extremes of superficial sentimentality and pointless self-expression, and opts for the radical middle. We need art that is a prophetic voice weaving tales of God’s reality in the language of the world. The voices in our collective cultural framework are telling other stories, we must tell The Story.
11) Eucharist – We must reengage the ritual practices of the historic Church. The meal Jesus commanded us to share is the Cross in our midst. By it we are bound to the death and resurrection of Jesus, bound to each other in a union that bridges all other differences, and bound to the Kingdom purposes of the Crucified One who “gathers all to Himself.”36 It is Jesus’ lasting parable for the Church; the story we are invited to find ourselves in.