In the beginning there was God,
And God who is sometimes Father, sometimes Mother,
And is always healer, restorer, and transformer,
Who is equal parts unknowable deity, personable sibling, and intimate presence created.
The way the world was created is less important than the fact that it was.
The Eternal One formed humans and hummingbirds, mountains and music, anteaters and art, dogs and dancing, insects and intimacy, leopards and love, brains and bodies,
And the Everlasting One saw that it was good.
It was good not because of how people and animals proved themselves,
But because in their very nature and at their very core,
Everyone was made worthy of admiration.
The Holy Being made humankind to love and to be loved, to tend and to be tended to, to form friendships and romantic partnerships, and to be cocreators with the All Creating one in the great mystery of birth and renewal.
Humanity was not designed to live alone, to be isolated, to live in a two dimentional existence, and to be self-sufficient,
Rather humanity was meant to live at peace with ALL of creation (with the grasslands and prairies, the vast expanse of nothingness and the busy city intersections), and to be interwoven in the great web of life.
And God delighted in this union of being, of knowing, and of growing together.
Until humankind decided they did not have enough. Individual and corporate greed took over as the man and woman lusted after more than just one another.
Ungrateful and unhappy, Adam and Eve were inconsolable. Their bellies ached, their minds clamoured, but above all their spirits and their souls were empty.
They looked for ways to fill this God shaped void.
They filled their lives with distractions and entertainment,
But this only lasted so long until things became more grave and blame set in.
And this blame has been the root cause of oppression today.
When people are unhappy and not at peace with themselves they find it easy to accuse the other.
This blame ripped God’s heart in half. God longed for men and women to see each other as equal, but it was impossible for the man and his wife to do so at the time,
And so they left all that was good and the perfect utopia God had designed just for them and set off to blaze their own path.
Yet the path they chose led them down a slippery road of disease, distress, and depression.
Sin entered the world and with it selfishness, sloth, and soul sickness,
Instead of the serenity, solace, and salvation God wanted to give the world’s people.
God was not done with the world, though, and God had not given up on the people even when it looked that way.
Instead God was working behind the scenes,
Working to bring healing through counsellors, doctors, mentors, nurses, and in miraculous ways,
Working to bring justice through judges, lawyers, magistrates, and through the Divine Inspired Word,
Working to bring mercy through teachers, advocates, and through the Holy Spirit.
And grace triumphed over evil. Good defeated bad, and the ultimate victory was won.
God’s tender embrace exemplified in compassionate care of all of creation,
God’s delight shown through singing and sharing, through food and feasting,
God’s beloved sensitivity unleashed through comforting those who mourn and are in grief.
God kept a document of how this was accomplished, and it has been handed down today through the Bible.
In the Bible we learn God’s character. We come to know an unknowable being. We come to see an invisible entitity.
We may never see God face to face, but we see God daily through the way the cattails dance on the pond, the way the fish jump out of the water at sunset, and the way the heron majestically swoops down to catch its prey,
And we see God when someone is rescued from addiction, when someone does a small act of kindness that impacts anothers life, and when someone speaks in encouragement and love.
None of us are perfect, and God doesn’t expect perfection, but God does expect us all to sing a hymn of holiness and a rapsody of righteousness until the day we pass.
Thousands of years into God’s document, the Great Friend sent a baby to this world,
A small, helpless bundle crying out in the night for his mother,
And the baby’s name was Jesus.
Jesus grew to be a man who taught his people the ways of God.
Jesus preached a Gospel of peace, of love, and of forgiveness.
Jesus challenged and overturned the hierarchy of his day,
And he tirelessly worked for good even when he was mocked, ridiculed and scorned.
Ultimately, Jesus’s radical ideas got him killed when he was barely in his thirties.
The world turned dark, and all seemed lost, all hope defated like a balloon with a hole poked through,
And yet, once again, God had a plan.
And so Jesus was miraculously raised back to life, death trampled by love.
And Jesus left this world to go back to heaven so that we will see him there when we die,
But until then, Jesus still walks with us.
Jesus walks with us when we struggle and are tempted, and when we rejoice and are glad.
Jesus who was fully human is well acquainted with the diverse human emotions,
And he uses them alongside our intuition, other people, life circumstances and events to get our attention.
Jesus also left us a special gift when he ascended to heaven, and he called this gift “the Holy Spirit.”
The Holy Spirit is our guide, and our GPS.
The Holy Spirit is the one who speaks to God on our behalf when we lack the words,
And the Holy Spirit has given each one of us certain gifts and graces to be used to benefit the world.
Some are given the gift of prophetic insight which challenges and opposes ungodly and harmful ideas,
Some are given the gifts of learning languages and of speaking in special tongues,
Some are given the gift of visioning and believing the impossible even when others disagree,
And some are given the gift of faith that all will be well even when the world looks like its crumbling.
God has given each human being a special purpose and plan which only they can accomplish,
And with each unique calling there is a certain responsibility attached.
Some are tasked to lead a school and others a church,
Some are expected to raise children, and others to care for the elderly,
Some are expected to write, to draw, to paint, or to garden,
All are called to love, to respect, to appreciate, and to admire.
And once again, God saw these special gifts and called them “good. Very good.”
In this world, God has not erased all the pain and problems we face.
Until Christ comes back to restore the world, to rebuild, and make things right again,
There will be moments of heartache, of disappointments, of longings, and disillusionment,
But God has also promised that in the end of the day, goodness and light will always win.
God created a special insititution to help this light shine into our hearts and it was called the Church.
All who believe in God and are open to the divine plan are invited to take part.
All are members of the church even if they have different ideas or beliefs,
This is because God created diversity as a way of furthering divine direction rather than as a distraction.
Culture, and cusine, fashion and faith, telescopes and theology, all used for the exact same purpose:
Glorifying and enjoying God forever.
Doctrines shift and change as time moves forward,
Dialogues help us to awaken to new ways of being and understanding our faith,
Faith is never stagnant, it is constantly evolving,
And yet, Christ stays the same.
The same God who first started documenting thousands of years ago, is the same God who still documents today and gracefully allows us to be part of the grand story.
One day there will be an end to all things, but that day is not yet.
One day there will be a moment when everything makes sense, but it hasn’t happened yet.
One day we will throw aside everything that gets in our way and run rushing into our Great Friend’s Arms,
But for today, we celebrate, and we hold fast, and we give thanks for what we have seen and known.
Because just for today, we remember that God is all we need,
And that because God is love, love is God,
And just for today, that is enough.