This past Sunday we continued our year long exploration into relationships. During April we will look at the "organic" nature of relationship. Normally when we think of the word "organic" we think about food grown organically and not about God or relationships. Luckily the organic food image can actually help us move into the realm of theology and relationship. Organically grown food is much more than food grown without the use of pesticides, fertilizers, genetically modified organisms, antibiotics and growth hormones. Truly organic food is part of a complex ecosystem. Organic ecosystems are "holistic systems designed to optimize the productivity and fitness of diverse communities (soil, organisms, plants, livestock and people) that are sustainable and harmonious." Each part of the ecosystem is vital and fundamental to the overall health and functioning of the whole. When the ecosystem is thriving, each part (soil, organisms, animal, people, etc.) naturally and without outside force contributes and receives from the others.
It is that image of each element fitting and working together "naturally and harmoniously" that can carry us into the realm of theology and relationships. Just as the organic farm thrives when all its elements are contributing and receiving from each other, so too our human relationships thrive when we recognize our interconnection. Each of us has been created from the same matter. We all come from the the heart and image of the Creator God. We all bear the 'Divine DNA' in us. Each of us express this divine DNA in unique ways physically and spiritually. We are each unique, the image of the Creator is in each of us. However, it unites us at a vital and fundamental level. Once we can truly see the Divine in ourselves and others we will never view relationships the same again. We were meant to function as a collective whole, giving and receiving and caring for each other and creation.
Unfortunately, however, we often focus on our differences, our own agendas and our limited, small version of the Divine and thus fail to see our similarities and relatedness. When we no longer see the Divine in others, we lose our connected humanity. We then are in a place of separateness where we posture, protect and become defensive. In such soil, God's ecosystem begins to unravel and produces little, if any, fruit. Lucky for us God is a Master Gardner. God knows where we need to be pruned, have compost added, or need watering. Without hesitation, shame, or guilt God offers the Spirit to garden along side us in soil of our life and soul. If we choose to accept the invitation, the way will be difficult at times yet the harvest will be well worth the effort. We will begin to see ourselves, others and creation as deeply connected and vital parts of God's ecosystem.
Reflect this week:
Who is tending the garden of my heart and soul?
By Babs May-Clark