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Reflections

R&V In the Word: All Things, No Exceptions

Image: Syahirah Salleh

“For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 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. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.”

Colossians 1:16-20 (NIV)

There have been times in my life when I have felt like the exception to these verses. Have you ever been there? Have you ever listened to the whispered lie of the deceiver, “All things, except you”? 

But in Christ, there are no exceptions.

For in him all things were created. All things: every tree, every ant, every pet, every atom, every planet, every thought, every feeling, every person. All things are in Christ, visible and invisible. In him all things hold together. In him all things are connected in love to the source of love itself.

You are wholly and dearly loved, created, shaped, and restored by a God who knew you in your mother’s womb, before you knew him, the beloved son or daughter of a compassionate king. The whole creation fits in that description, all of it and all of us, reconciled to him, which means reunited, which means at peace and in harmony with one another.

That is the power of Christ. That is the power of love. When we follow Jesus, we are part of the body working to spread the word to every person that all things were created by God, all things are loved by God, not except you; even you, especially you, so that they may see the world through that same lens of love.

Points of Reflection

  1. Be honest with yourself and with God: What are some of the ways you have felt like the exception? Confess these to the Lord, surrendering them to him, and ask the Holy Spirit to show you how even this aspect of yourself is created in his image.
  2. In what areas of life do you take off the lens of Jesus Christ? What do those areas of your life look like when you put on the lens of Jesus?

For the Kids

  1. If all things were created in Jesus, what was Jesus like? Think about the qualities of Jesus. What does Jesus’ love for us mean for how we interact with others?
  2. “Reconcile” means to “restore friendly relations” with someone or something. If Jesus reconciles all things to him, what do you think it looks like to restore friendly relations with nature?

Action

Set a timer for 15 minutes and make a list of “all things” that were created by God in Jesus Christ. Think broadly, big and small, specific and particular. When the time is up, meditate on what it means for Jesus to have been the maker of all things. What does that mean for how we treat all things? What does that mean for the goodness of all things? How do we find the beauty in all things, since all things were created by the One who is beautiful?

Readings

In my early faith journey, I found the writings of C.S. Lewis. Of particular help was his book Mere Christianity. I thought of C.S. Lewis today and this quote from him as I reflected on these verses: “I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.” Jesus Christ is the lens through which we see the world and everything in it that has been made, because it has been made in him. C.S. Lewis wrote dozens of books, including The Chronicles of Narnia, The Screwtape Letters, Letters to Malcolm, The Problem of Pain, and so many more that have influenced and guided Christians for decades. If you haven’t read him, what are you waiting for? 🙂