Colossians 1: 24-29: Christ in Us
March 29, 2015
That we may present everyone perfect in Christ.
This is St Paul’s goal. And as modern apostles, it can be ours. We work on our own conversion, we rebuke sinners, we pray for our enemies, we hope for the impossible, and we abide in the faith that all will be well.
The letter to the people of Colossae was written before Paul had visited the town east of Ephesus. A small Jesus community had begun there but they had no clear disciple to follow. A man named Epaphras asked Paul’s help in instructing the people about the Christ . . . and so we have these words today.
Paul writes that suffering and persevering through the antics of pagans and heretics is precisely the work of a disciple of Christ. This letter is a mini-lecture on who the Christ is, the nature of our work done in his name, various warnings against false teachers, and what our mystical end ought to be. It is a snapshot of who and what we are, and who and what we hope to be. The letter is a perfect message for us when we find ourselves surrounded by ineptitude, corruption, deceit, envy, pride and vice.
When we reflect on some of the conversations we have had during these weeks of lent, we might use these verses.
When we think about our Noontime reflections this week, we might use these words.
When we consider the gift of Palm Sunday and this coming holiest of weeks, we might enact this message.
When we put ourselves in the first century in the place of those in Colossae, we might better understand that the perfection to which we are called is not a lock of error, but rather a perfection in perseverance. For it is in this way that we best find Christ in us.
Adapted from a Favorite written on April 20, 2007.
Tomorrow, the poor in body and spirit.