Oh tiny seed, planted in the soil of Creation
hidden joy and mystery
Warmed by the love of God
springing up in joyful expectation
Growing up to become the largest of shrubs
sheltering all of Creation in its shade.
Christians for the most part have this kind of hope: for a superhero Christ to return in this Second Coming, and instantly transform all of Creation into the Peaceable Kingdom of God. Christians are awaiting the Messiah, only Christians believe that Christ came once already, and now they await his return in glory. In many ways, nothing has changed.
The biggest flaw in this Second-Coming-as-superhero type scenario is the idea that the God who created us as totally free-willed creatures will suddenly come along and coerce all of Creation into peace and harmony at the end of time. God has not worked that way, God does not work that way, and God is not going to work that way. God is not a God of coercion who will somehow force or manipulate Creation into harmony and rob it of freedom. God is not creating the kingdom of God through violence, and will not take away from Creation the gift of freedom. Somehow this great peace and harmony, and the blessing of all Creation, is going to happen through people who still have their free wills. Therefore God must persuade, rather than coerce, us to peace.
God is a God of persuasion, who calls us into harmony and peace, and through Christ, shows us the way to harmony and peace. We, all the people of the world, not only the baptized, are the instruments of God’s shalom peace -- if we but knew it. From the beginning God created people for a purpose. All of humanity is created in God’s image, and we are all God’s children. Christians have to wake up to the realization of who we are in God, and one by one awaken all the rest of God’s children, and call these children to maturity. We have to start following the way, the truth and the light, and let the kingdom of God grow, and spread and become. We are God’s children, but we are not meant to stay as immature infants. We are called to maturity and partnership with God. And we are called to wake up all the rest of humanity to its role as partners with God. All of humanity has been created for this partnership with God. We are not mere spectators of Creation, called to be God’s cheerleaders, shouting or singing alleluias. We are created to enter into the plan of Creation, and are an active part of God’s plan.
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