Romans 8: 19-23
All Creation waits for the children of God to be revealed.
The book of Genesis tells us how God created everything, and created humans in God's own image. There is something within us that responds and is aware of the reality of this claim. In many other creation stories throughout the world there is this same theme -- that human beings are somehow a reflection of God. There is that place within me, and within you that senses the connection, the something more than mere flesh.
What is the meaning, the purpose of being created as the image of God in the midst of Creation? For many years I understood this idea in the same way as most people around me. There was this idea that God created people, and then created everything else for the people. We were at the center, and all was created as a gift to and for us. I don't believe things in quite that same way any more. As I considered this whole concept of being an image of God, a reflection of God in the midst of Creation another idea popped into my head. It is not that creation is a gift to us, it is that we are a gift to Creation!
God has a plan for Creation and we are part of that plan. Creation is an on-going process. Creation continues as long as God is Creator. It is not that God was the Creator, but God is the Creator. Human beings figure somehow into God's plan.
We are God's children, but we are not meant to stay immature infants. We are called to maturity and partnership with God. And we are called to wake up all of humanity to its role as partners with God. For from the beginning all of humanity has been created for this partnership with God in the task of Creation. We are not mere spectators of Creation, called to be God's cheerleaders, shouting and singing alleluias. We are created to enter into the plan of Creation, and are an active part of God's plan. From the beginning God created us for a purpose; we are all created in God's image, and we are all God's children.
We, all the people of the world, not only the baptized, are the instruments of God's plan for Creation. You see, God creates everything out of chaos -- a dark and formless wasteland. We have a God who brings order out of chaos in the beginning, now and forever. Both chaos and the ordering of chaos are of God. Chaos continues to disrupt things, and just as dependably, everything comes into new order, and so it goes. This is the pattern.
In the stories of Creation humanity is placed in a garden, to tend that garden. What is a garden but the bringing of order to the chaos of nature? Creation is moving toward the harmonious coexistence of all its parts. We are called to share with God in bring Shalom peace to Creation.
And so Creation waits for us to wake up to who we are in God; to be revealed as God's true children. As chaos disrupts the world, we work with God to bring peace and harmony, and so it goes.
Here is the book that explores the unfulfilled promise of Christianity... and calls for us to wake up!