“Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven…“ (Mt 6: 9-10)
Today, as those of us on the Older Calendar begin the “Forefeast“ (Предпразднство) of Christmas, of the feast of our Lord’s birth in Bethlehem, and also the feast-day of St. John of Kronstadt (see his picture here), I’m thinking about this whole business of perceiving my world “on earth as it is in heaven.“ Is that even possible, or is it some Walt-Disney-style version of reality?
The answer to that is yes, and no. It is, yes, possible, that earth and heaven are united in their “ways,“ because of the coming into our world of the God-Man, Jesus Christ. He unites, in His divine-human presence among us, the invisible and visible realities of Man and God, of earth and heaven. And He lets me participate in both those realities, if I let Him do that, by me stepping into communion with Him, in my daily prayer. On the other hand, no, He does not perpetuate any “Walt Disney style“ versions of reality, generated by my various brands of “wishful thinking,“ which bring me false hope and/or false fear, as I walk through my daily responsibilities.
So today let me embrace the gentle truth of honesty, that is to say, humility, in the human-divine reality that is truth, “on earth as it is in heaven,“ in communion with my gently-humble Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. “Thy will be done“ with me today, O Lord, not according to my self-isolated conceptions and misconceptions, but “on earth as it is in heaven!“