Day 20: Kingdom Spreading in Concentric Circles

I’m starting a new job today, Director of Soul Care at Holy Cross Anglican Cathedral here in Loganville, GA. It’s just 10 hours a week but I’m fantastically excited. I get to do exactly what I love to do best: lead people into the presence of Jesus.  I’ll be encouraging the good work already going on, building up the lay who are doing visitations, doing some pastoral care myself and starting healing care groups here in Loganville over the next few months. Here’s the family picture we took just this last week on our porch swing for Holy Cross’ website:

Gross Family-low res


I’ll keep writing this series, 31 days to Fall in Love with Your Zip Code, but perhaps a bit more slowly. I’m a slow writer anyways. I need to marinade, listen, and wrestle before anything of value finds its way to the page.


This is a post from two February’s ago…but one which is so central to my theology of the home, that it keeps coming up in every series I write. It is the basis of the next 10 days of our series:


Our Christmas tree is still up.  Scratch that.  There is an evergreen tree with dry green needles propped up in the corner of our living room.  Our tree is still dressed with white sparkly lights casting a golden glow up the ceiling, but now there’s a difference.  It’s had a makeover.  Now the tree wears heart-shaped paper doilies, red ribbon garland and valentine hearts.  We’ll keep it up for Valentine’s this week, then I promise I’ll throw the dry thing out on the curb next Sunday night.  Promise.

This was six year old Madeline and my doing.  Saturday afternoon Xavier napped for a solid two hours and Madeline and I gathered red and white construction paper (she’s off pink), scissors and twine onto the coffee table.  We slid our fingers down the paper to crease it, cut out red hearts, punched out small white ones for a garland and all of this while recounting the story of Jesus’ love.  We fingered a long first-century looking nail hidden in the center of the tree and talked aloud about why it still fit on our love tree.  We chatted nonchalantly about how she could feel strong knowing she was loved by Jesus, that she is a daughter of the Most High God, his special girl.  Seeds were planted, little kingdom seeds.

I’ve got a small window and I know it.


I have a small window where this precious girl is good soil for the seed of the Word.


I have a small window and any ministry I do MUST start here.


KINGDOM spreading starts at home.


Paul gives hints to Timothy on how to locate an overseer and instructs: watch him with his family.  Has he been faithful managing those closest to him? If he has been wise with those close, he may be able to handle a wider concentric circle. (1 Timothy 3:1-5)  No more neglected marriages and families “sacrificed” for the Kingdom.  It’s just not Biblical. No more believing that God will take care of our families if we take care of His work. We are invited to plant the kingdom deep into the ground right at home.


Let’s start right here.


If the Kingdom is like a mustard seed, spreading branches into our world, the Reign of God will saturate our marriages, lift up our children, heal our extended families, provide shade for the neighborhood.


If the Kingdom of God is like yeast, it will expand across the city block through the streets of our town, broadcast into and out of houses and workplaces.  Jesus is always with us and when the Kingdom of heaven has been welcomed and come near, we can’t hold Him back, He WILL spread. Good news is like that.


When salvation comes to us, an earthquake of resurrection life rocks us fierce, tremors extending for a lifetime. The plates of our life shift and we push up and out.  The Holy Spirit begins to spread Isaiah 61 healing, cuts out cancerous lies, reorients our eyes, opens doors where we have been held captive.


I close my eyes and see the brass processional cross come down firm on the ground of our life here at the yellow cottage and pray the power of God spreads out from that epicenter…in concentric circles


As we are transformed, we begin to be an epicenter of the Kingdom…rooted right where we are.



We’re on a 31 day journey toward falling in love with our zip code. Our family just moved five states south and are loving the warm October but riding the ups and downs of a major transition. Would you like to come along? Slip your email address (I’ll guard it with my life) into the CONNECT box on the front page and we’ll journey together. Start here.



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1 Comment

  1. what a beautiful idea! and a glorious tribute to Love. not only by telling her the old, old Story, but by spending *time* with her. that is a sermon in the language kids hear, i think. 🙂

    thanks for sharing at IP!

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