What we do in the Lord is 'not in vain,' and that is the mandate we need for every act of justice and mercy, every program of ecology, every effort to reflect God's wise stewardly image into his creation. In the new creation the ancient human mandate to look after the garden is dramatically reaffirmed, as John hints in his resurrection story, where Mary supposes Jesus is the gardener. The resurrection of Jesus is the reaffirmation of the goodness of creation, and the gift of the Spirit is there to make us the fully human beings we were supposed to be, precisely so that we can fulfill that mandate at last. -NT Wright, Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, The Resurrection and the Mission of the Church
Don't you see? Because of the Resurrection, Eden and the Earth will eventually be gloriously restored (Romans 8:18-21). The stunning truth is that we are participating in that renewal at this very moment as reflections of Christ and his glory:
- When we stand up for the mistreated in our workplace.
- When we do our work with all our might, imaging our creative God.
- When we plant a tree.
- When we write a poem, play a song, celebrate life.
- When we make babies and when we change babies and when we raise babies to the glory of God.
- When we tell a john to "back off, dude!" defending the honor and dignity of women.
- When we protect these same women by working to stop the systemic causes of gender violence.
- When we rise with praise on our lips and kindness in our actions.
- When our lives shout the good news of the gospel.
- When we do anything in the name of our risen Lord, who is reconciling all things to himself! (Colossians 1:15-23)
Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done—in me and through me today—as it is in heaven. Amen.
Your turn: How does knowing we are participating in building the Kingdom today give you hope?