“Christian faith, it could be said, is born in the aftermath of God. Our fragile faith is fanned into life in the wake of what we believe to have been the incoming of a life-giving encounter in which we feel connected with, and transformed by, the source of everything that is.”
Peter Rollins, How (Not) to Speak of God, Paraclete Press.
The above quote is the first line in Rollin’s stimulating little book. The remainder of the book is provocative and helpful. I recommend it for your reading and most importantly, your reflection.
As I progressed through the book, I kept retreating back to this opening sentence. The phrase, “aftermath of God”, kept bidding me to pause and reflect over and over again the idea embedded in those three words.
We are the continuation of the action of God. We are what God had in mind when He created….when He formed….when He looked at all He had done and said, “it is good”. From Genesis to our generation….we live in the aftermath of God.
Now that is not to say that God did His creative work then walked away. I’m not using “aftermath” in the sense that God is past tense. Jesus himself, once reminded his antagonists that God is always at work. (John 5:17) So the term “aftermath” as I am using it, means all the subsequent actions God has been taking since He first set our world in motion.
We speak of the aftermath of hurricane Katrina and more recently of the aftermath of the bail out on Wall Street. Before that there was the aftermath of wars and floods and all manner of cataclysmic events. But history tells us that, given time, subsequent generations will only reflect on these events as a blip in history. These events will be studied and analyzed, but they will not be personal to those who will take a backward look at the major headlines troubling us today.
But the aftermath of God will continue. Even into eternity. Whether humanity realizes it or not, we live in the aftermath of God.
We continue to be the work of God. We are the objects of His affection. We either respond to His work in a way that honors and adores Him or we respond in a way that disappoints and distances us from Him.
Our faith is a response to God’s work. Love God and Love one another.
We live in the aftermath of God.