My Little Kingdom



I grew up playing video games. It started with a Nintendo and then a Super Nintendo. We got a Sega Genesis when it came out and it was hard to imagine what could ever be better than the things we saw on the screen. Playing with my brothers was one of my favorite things. We would take turns switching off trying to beat a level or zone. As we got older the games only got more complicated. I started playing computer games and found a deep appreciation for Real-Time Strategy and Grand Strategy games. You have to build up a good economy to sustain your expansion as you consider how best to conquer the little digital world that is depicted on the screen in vivid colors. I like the challenge presented and the instant gratification of taking over a fortress from my opponents. It is nice to have my own little kingdom where I am in control and have the power. It is a lovely illusion.

Sometimes I let that kind on kingly thinking come into my real life. I want to be in control. I want to make quick progress and see rapid change. In a game a few moments could represent days, months, or even years. The progress there is artificial and still somehow satisfying, but only as long as I play the game. As soon as I close the program I am just me again. I have a real life that doesn’t move so swiftly, the changes are harder to see, progress more difficult to track, and my enemies are clearly marked by the lines on the map or the clothing they wear. It is nice to have my own little kingdom sometimes. I get to be in control, I get to shape things, I get to make things happen, and decide where I go and what I do. As fun as it is to play games and get lost in that unreality, it is so much more pleasant to live in God’s Kingdom. He is in control, not me. He is the one who shapes the story, not me. He is the one who sees the progress made in my life and is satisfied. Having God in control makes life all the more enjoyable. That means I have to give up my little kingdom. I have to let go of the desire to control and be content to follow the leading of the true King, the Lord of All, and the Lover of my soul.

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