"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Holding It All Together

Recently we dismantled our satellite connections inside and outside of the house. The process was way more involved than I imagined. I would have thought that all I needed to do was to unplug my receivers and send them back. But with this particular company I had to do that plus remove a mother board looking thing from the outside of my house, as well as some noise reduction gadgets from each satellite dish. (I had some help from a friend with one of these that exceeded the reach of my ladder.) To my surprise, most of these items, standing out in the elements for many years, were held together with one or two small screws! I am amazed they held together as long as they did in our Colorado weather.

There are times in our lives that test the metal of the screws that hold us together. The array of problems that parades through the typical counseling office astound the most seasoned among us: indescribable pain and unutterable losses revolving around seemingly unbearable circumstances. It is in walking through these bleak seasons that people discover the reality of their faith and the truth of sustaining grace. The presence and comfort of the Shepherd who walks with us through these dark valleys (notably not around or away from) reveals the tangible nature of deep and abiding relationship with him. It is when nothing else works for us that we realize that Jesus is the force that holds us together.

Paul wrote to the Colossians:

"17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy." Colossians 1:17-18

Jesus Christ was before all things--present and active at creation. He is also active in holding all things together: the balance of the planets, especially earth, suspended at just the right distance from the Sun to sustain life and allow the cycle of our water planet to work; the intricate balance of nature providing all that is needed (micro-organisms, oxygen, water, light, photosynthesis, gravity); seasons, and on and on. What we call the natural order might be described as the character of Christ.

Have you considered that Christ is also holding you together? Literally, every atom (each an inexplicable miracle in its own right) just where it needs to be to serve a unique function as part of an organ contributing to the greater needs of the body which in turn is capable of interacting with the environment and other organisms. Virtually, Jesus holds you together through the storms of life as well. At those times he speaks: "I'm right here. Will you trust me?"

Don't misunderstand--this Colossians passage is all about Jesus--his deity, his timelessness, his role as creator and sustainer, his place as head of the body (the church), the firstborn among those who will rise again, supreme over all.

But isn't it good to know that the "all things" he holds together includes you and me?