Friday, February 25, 2011
Blog 124 Transformed
Blog 124 Transformed Our blog yesterday left out one item on my wall presentation of our life story. I try to imagine the six billion human creatures scattered throughout the world. There are non-believers, people for whom God just does not play a part in their current everyday experience of life, religious Jews, faithful Muslims, Protestants, Catholics. I believe that all among them who conscientiously have followed their conscience could and should feel blessed when they come to the end of their time here on earth to find themselves in the category of reformed sinners, now with their sins forgiven or forgotten, unafraid of the future where they have not yet and hopefully never will commit a sin again. But even that is not all there is to the story of creation and God's love. Going all the way back to the Book of Genesis in the fifteenth verse of chapter three we find the Creator's promise of a response to sin that turned out in history as infinitely and therefore unimaginably more than the mere forgiveness of sin and the consequent return of the sinner to a state of human innocence. "where sin abounded grace did more abound." (Rom 5: 20). Jesus. Emmanuel, God-Among-Us, brought a gift from Heaven that no one before Him even dreamed of. "What nation ever had a god as close to it as our God is to us?" It is the gift of God's own divine life, shared with us in our unique human way through ( Jn 14: 6; 1 Tim 2: 5). with ( Mt 28: 20), and in (Jn 15: 4-7) Jesus. Talking to Nicodemus Jesus identified this gift in terms of being "born from above", or "again" as some versions of the text have it. (Jn 3: 11). Other texts throw light on this one: See what love the Father has bestowed on us in letting us be called Children of God! YET THAT IS WHAT WE ARE!. (1 jN 3: 1). And "If anyone is in Christ he is a NEW CREATION ! ( 2 Cor 5: 17) In Christ, through faith and Baptism, we are TRANSFORMED ! These thoughts and texts deserve more space and time than we are giving them here, but I thought it would be good to focus them with you and hope that will incline you to discover more of their richness power and possible impact upon your life. Images come to mind in reference to the key words. ALL of creation is FORMED by God. The image of God as the DESIGNER AND OWNER OF ALL comes to mind. Conjointly with the process through which we pass from being INFORMED by faith, DEFORMED by sin, and REFORMED through forgiveness, we Christians are TRANSFORMED . We are not merely made into better men and women. Rather, we are created anew, "BORN FROM ABOVE" (again) as children of God in a definite and real way, through with and in Jesus. Through Him: Jesus our BRIDGE, or MEDIATOR. With Him: Jesus our FRIEND, COMPANION, HELPER. In Him: Jesus our LIFE. Wow! What a story that is! And it is offered FREE to all who believe. As you can see from the image printed above, the fifth segment of our story is not just another one among the others. It is very special, in a cetagory of its own. A flash of white , a gold 'T'. and a crucifix in the center of the T to express and remind us of our faith in the total unconditional obedient love of Jesus for the Father and for us on the Cross. Here, revealed to us by the Holy Spirit is the source of our faith and forgiveness and the eternal love into which we have been transformed. Our next blog will give a few more Bible texts and insights to identify our transformation and and the call it makes to us to share the mission of Jesus to sanctify the world in which we live at this particular moment of history. May the Lord be with us and within us so that we might be blessed and be a blessing to those around us.