In difficult times, be they societal or more personal, it is particularly important to know who we are, who we are in Christ. Even as Christ’s disciples and friends, we so often look to the outside, to the world and persons around us, to know who are—and for validation. Yet, “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17). We know this in faith.
We also know, alas, that faith, because so subtle and deep and because freely exercised, is easily overshadowed. The voice of God that we hear (with our hearts!) in faith can be easily drowned by other voices. And so, we ask the question afresh: who am I in Christ?
Who we most truly are in Christ cannot be seen in the mirror, cannot be measured, cannot even be easily described. All that I am has lovingly been taken hold of by Christ—my capacity to love, my hair texture, the contours of my body, my past, my relationships, my brain—and yet, the child of God in me, at his/her core, is a mystery (which is a good thing!) Our life is “hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:3). We are uniquely loved and held and safe and, over time, with our cooperation, we are transformed, divinized. We are becoming like God.
Saint John tells us in his first epistle (3:2), “Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he (Jesus) appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.” One day the transformation will be complete.
In the meantime, on this pilgrimage towards our heavenly home, we trust that we have been “chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before God in love.” (Ephesians 1:4) Chosen and thus sent forth, we must witness to all those around us, along the way, in these complex times, to the goodness and brilliance of God. Indeed, Saint Paul urges you and me (Ephesians 4:1-3) “to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which we have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
This is my prayer with you.
From the desk of the Rector