Sunday one of the ideas that we looked at was that of participation. As the Trinity, God is participatory in His essence and nature. In the beginning, the Cosmic Christ/The Word was participating in creation with the Father and Spirit. The Spirit was participating with the Word and the Father, hovering over the depths at creation (Gen. 1:2). Through the incarnation of Christ as the human Jesus, we see the constant participation of the Son, Father and Spirit. Jesus, over and over again, models for us what it means to be in relationship. He is constantly seeking the Father and knowledge of the Father's will. The Father and Spirit not only provide Jesus with direction, but also comfort, wisdom and strength. It is a beautiful self emptying relationship where each participates in the life of the other.
This is the same invitation that God gives to us. It is an invitation to not only open our lives to God but also toparticipate in the very life of God. Thomas Merton says, "Our vocation is not simply to be, but to work together with God in the creation of our own life, our own identity, our own destiny… This means to say that we should not passively exist, but actively participate in His creative freedom, in our own lives, and in the lives of others, . .... To work out our own identity in God, [is what] the Bible calls “working out our salvation.”
We already have the Spirit of God within us. Therefore, it is more a matter of actively opening ourselves to God to participate with Him rather than trying to create or "become" something more or better. We "participate" with God in a variety of ways: contemplative prayer, meditation, study, service, etc. It is not so much what we do, but rather the attitude in which we do it. Participating is about listening, following, contributing, and partnering with God. Our egos and culture, however, encourage us to be "self made"/ creating our "own" destiny by exerting our will, thoughts and agenda. To the extent that we follow our ego and culture we will "edge God out" of our lives. However, if we accept His invitation to actively participate with Him, we find that we "work together with God in the creation of our life, identity and destiny."
Reflect this Week:
How can I participate with God ?
By Babs May-Clark