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Day 71: Living Daily in Reality: Renewing the Earth

by Ernest O'Neill

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Our world consists of billions of spinning particles so small that only our physicists can detect or hypothesize them. They are controlled by our Maker’s Spirit in his only Son, Jesus Christ; they express the results of our acquiescence or rejection of our Creator’s will. He has permitted us to desecrate their harmony so that we can see in the resulting world the nothingness that exists apart from him. Meanwhile he has recreated the world and us outside time in another part of his universe - so that through this cosmic miracle we can eventually come to accept his will for his only Son in us.

We appear to be quite far on in this process as our world tips towards chaos. However our Maker so “longs for the creature he has made” (Job 14:15) that, despite the pain he feels with each egocentric move you and I make, he restrains this world’s disintegration as much as is consistent with our willing conformity to him. However long we hold out and he suffers, his steadfast love for us in this regard never ceases and his mercies do not come to an end.

So although we all observe and take part in developing the earth’s resources and civilizing its peoples outwardly, another deeper renewing of our hearts is beginning by the work of our Creator’s Son’s uncreated life in us. This is the renewing of the earth that will complete the work begun when His Son was given us and our world before time began. Although in this present era this inner work seems secondary, it is in fact the primary work - because the reason we were given the task of developing this planet was precisely so that our heart for it would be the same as God’s!

So as we begin now to look at the way an inside-out personality affects our present world we are really looking at the way our hearts become like our Maker’s. The reason we glimpse such apparent delight in the seagulls as they soar or our little dog as he feels the wind in his coat-hairs is the sheer joy of God’s heart. Throughout the universe darkness is constantly dispelled by the joy of the Creator as he pours forth his own life and heart. This is the fresh life that will totally renew the earth so that it is able to rise with its sons and daughters into the harmony of God’s joyful universe.

Let us start now to see the ways this miracle of uncreated life transforms our present world, makes the earth a better place to live in, and prepares it and us for the final work that only God himself can complete when the earth – as we know it – ends. Although the outward calamities like the bizarre shootings and tortures and rapes are themselves horrendous and savage in their effects, the hardness and cruelty they infuse into all our hearts is even more destructive. So everywhere in our present world there is developing a heart that is less and less like our Maker’s and yet is increasingly oblivious to its dehumanizing effect. This is the more serious deterioration to be stopped and turned around - if the present world is to avoid a premature end.

It is our great privilege that we are no longer enslaved to sin by corrupt personalities driven by the world’s inadequate substitutes but are willing bond-servants of a dear Father who has made everything in this broken world right. We live now in the joy of this rightness and through that perception and faith we express the confident power and joy of his only Son, so that our Father manifests here in time the world that he has renewed in eternity. That wonderful rearrangement of the billions of particles that make up the present state of the matter in the world is part of the ways and works of God by which he continually adjusts our present world and us in their progress towards the righteousness he has created. As we have increasingly the mind that is in Christ, the creator’s son, so our heart becomes one with God’s and his ability to rearrange the particles of matter in the loaves and fishes -- and expresses itself in us as we begin to mould the world by his power.

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