The Greening of God

It is in Christ that the fullness of the Godhead dwells embodied.

In him you are brought to fulfillment. 

                                                                                  Colossians 2:9-10

This is the season of the greening of the world. The landscape rolls in vast hills graced in green, the trees coming back to life in shades from the soft spring green rising to the horizon, timidly making their advent across the barren landscape of winter, evolving into chartreuse, from jade to emerald, the tree line voluptuous in sap, hookers, the olive green yielding the depth of contrast, and the ever-verdant grass green, with undertones of terre verte finishing the spring palette.

Out of the infinite blue vastness we call ‘God’, Christ, the Word, present from the beginning in the dance of the Godhead, breathed forth the reality that now surrounds us called time.  And the stuff of God came to be. A small, brown seed planted in the universe of matter and mortal.  Like the coming of Spring, in the seasons of the human heart, the seed that was always there, begins to bud, to take on a new dimension of life and grow in its greenness within us. St. Paul, once so intent on the destruction of that budding seed, who would experience one of the most dramatic conversions in all of Christendom, comes to reveal the central truth at the heart of the gospel and of the Christ-life he now preaches: to the extent that we live in Christ, we already have the fullness of God in us. Just as God was in its fullness embodied in Jesus as he walked the greening hills and valleys of Galilee, so too, now the life that is his as the Christ of God, is ours as well. I am the stuff of God and God is the stuff of me.

In Colossians this is no future hope.  The greening of God within us is not contingent upon anything other than our lives in Christ. He is the ever-present, evergreen life that we are raised to with his raising from the grip of death.

In the fullness of the endless season of  Christ, Paul echoes again the invitation, the call to each of us, over the ages, before the Christ he encountered on the Damascus road became a doctrine or dogma, an ‘ology’, to live in the fullness and know the fulfillment that is ours now in Christ in our lives. Paul’s is the ever present reminder that what was dead within us has been ‘nailed to the cross’, as he puts it, and a cross long since rotted to make mulch, covering over and protecting the new beginnings of spring, the deadness of our winters, forgiven and forgotten on that lonely  hillside where the cross gave way to the manger and to the Spring that is the ever emerging greening of God within us.

 

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