All Creation Groans
Adapted from Exploring Community of Christ Basic Beliefs: A Commentary
(Adapted from Exploring Community of Christ Basic Beliefs: A Commentary edited by Anthony J. Chvala-Smith, pp. 64-65. A Kindle version is available at www.HeraldHouse.org.)
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. -Romans 15:13
All creation groans as it awaits the liberating touch of God’s love. Community of Christ believes it is among those called to bring healing to the world. A concept of salvation limited to a human future beyond time will miss the vital truth of our interrelatedness with all creation and the call to build the reign of God here and now. It will ignore the Bible’s own cosmic vision of salvation as the liberation of all things. That vision yet shapes Community of Christ. In its power, we must work against greed, exploitation, and violence toward others, whether those others are suffering people, plants and animals, or ecosystems. Understanding that God’s salvation is for the whole creation gives us new imagery to help work for the kind of peaceful and just communities God seeks.
In essence, to practice compassion toward the Earth and each other, we must seek the peace of Jesus Christ for all creation. God calls us today to break the bonds of fear and to live a radical kind of stewardship:
When your willingness to live in sacred community as Christ’s new creation exceeds your natural fear of spiritual and relational transformation, you will become who you are called to be. The rise of Zion the beautiful, the peaceful reign of Christ, awaits your whole-hearted response to the call to make and steadfastly hold to God’s covenant of peace in Jesus Christ.
This covenant entails sacramental living that respects and reveals God’s presence and reconciling activity in creation. It requires whole-life stewardship dedicated to expanding the church’s restoring ministries, especially those devoted to asserting the worth of persons, protecting the sacredness of creation, and relieving physical and spiritual suffering. -Doctrine and Covenants 164:9b\xe2\x88\x92c
“Practice Resurrection” (Wendell Berry).
During this Easter season, we invite you daily into a breath prayer focused on resurrection. With each exhale, respond in a word or phrase to the question, “What is dying?” (fear, anger, assumptions, etc.) With each inhale, notice a response in a word or phrase to the question “What is rising?” (love, courage, trust, etc.) You may choose to use the same word or phrase throughout this season, or let each day bring its own unique response to this sacred pattern of dying and rising that is central to our faith.
Today’s Prayer for Peace
Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.