November 19, 2010


Currently I am reading Thomas Merton's "New Seeds of Contemplation" and recently was left speechless by one very short sentence!
"God utters me like a word containing a partial thought of Himself."
The ramifications of this thought keep running around in me.   Like a stone thrown into a pool these words keep sending out ripples of thought that are a constant delight and challenge.
There is first of all a wonderful picture of God opening His mouth and breathing out a word/name that contains enough of His being to go out and become everything that is in His heart and mind as He speaks.  Carried by His breath, this Word from God goes on and on until all that He had in mind has come to pass!  We know His Word does not return to Him void.  What a glorious picture of the Creator and His creation joined by His breath - who or what can mess with that kind of creative power, or with the man or woman who has come to understand the incredible way they have been made.
Then I begin to think of this in terms of all men and women, all of creation, everything that has been created has been created by God.  Once again it has wide reaching ramifications for you and I and how we relate to absolutely everything around us, especially people.  How could we ignore, mistreat or harm - it is like shaking a fist in the face of God and telling Him what He makes is no good!  It also releases us into a greater joy in knowing that He can be seen and found in everyone, even if His presence is not obvious at first glance.  If they're breathing then He is present!
Such thoughts sow hope and breed perseverance.  In the face of what looks impossible they connect us to the creative and redemptive power of a God who loves everything He has made and says it is good - even when it is behaving badly.  The death and resurrection of His Son make it possible for God to move with power to bring change.  This knowledge sets a new measure of His heart in us and we are able to love more in even the most difficult of circumstances.  Surely this is a glorious statement into the heavenlies and to the powers and authorities He intends should see His power displayed in this way through HIS Church.
In the light of this the question can never be of power, wealth, fame, or recognition.  No it is about people, or as our Maori friends would say "te tangata, te tangata, te tangata".  I cannot become rich while my brother or sister wastes away in brokenness and poverty.  I cannot accept recognition when my brothers and sisters are marginalised and overlooked.  What use is worldly power when it cannot change these lives and circumstances?
The changes that need to come cannot be brought about by the legal process, they will only happen through an outpouring of love and grace, the outworking of that Word and Breath that brought each of us to be.  Recognised in each other, this joins us to our Creator and to one another.
May the Word that He breathed carry each and every one of us to the fulfillment of all and everything He intended as He opened His mouth to speak.