If we aren’t careful, we miss it. We become so familiar with the familiar that we miss the new thing happening. We fail to see, so we don’t look.
John is careful to let his readers know Jesus wasn’t hiding from those seeking his arrest. Jesus went to the same garden area he and his disciples had gone for years. Judas knew he could find Jesus there. He always went there. It was familiar. It was normal. It was routine. It was usual, typical. John writes, “Jesus often met there with his disciples.”
As a matter of fact, it was so familiar and normal several disciples fell asleep. Three times. They couldn’t keep their eyes open. No expectancy. No hoping. No curiosity. No empathy with Jesus’s struggle in prayer. Same place. Same people. Same routine. Same trees. Same grass. Same breeze. Same sounds. Same scent.
But the kingdom of heaven was unfolding before their tired, bored and weary eyes.
The man sweating drops of blood, who had said over and over again how his time hadn’t yet come, arrived at his hour. The salvation of the world was happening in the familiar.
Jesus had said the kingdom of God is in your midst (Luke 17:21). The kingdom of God is within you. Among you. Near.
Be careful today. Careful not to miss the kingdom in your midst. Keep watch so you don’t fall into temptation. The temptation to think the kingdom is something other than what it actually is.