Made In His Image – Colossians 1:15-23

Colossians 1:15-23 NAS

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities-all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.

And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach – if indeed you continue in the faith firmly established and steadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, was made a minister (and coach).

When the ball is hiked in a football game, the viewer’s eyes are trained on the quarterback. The ultimate compliment to a QB and a play caller is when the defense is fooled. While everyone is focused on one area, yardage is being gained on another part of the field, and by someone unexpected. Many of us may be fooled as well as we think of God’s work in the earth today. The unit God has on the field is His Church and …

                              when it comes to the church, he organizes and holds it together

Unfortunately those watching the western division of The Saints versus the Demons do not see the Church gaining any ground. It would seem the Church only knows a few plays and the opponent knows them all, stopping most of them for a loss. How can this be?  Is there a problem with the offensive coordinator? Is there a problem with the play? The theology of some even lead them to believe that God has ordained this quarter to be a loss. For the record, I don’t see any coach, especially ours, ordaining a loss, and there is certainly no problem with The Play or its Caller. Read our passage again, this time with your heart. (Note: You cannot speed-read and heart-listen at the same time.)

Everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in Him and finds its purpose in Him. He was there before any of it came into existence and holds it all together right up to this moment…He was supreme in the beginning and—leading the resurrection parade—He is supreme in the end. From beginning to end He’s there, towering far above everything, everyone. So spacious is He, so roomy, that everything of God finds its proper place in Him without crowding. Not only that, but all the broken and dislocated pieces of the universe—people and things, animals and atoms—get properly fixed and fit together in vibrant harmonies, all because of His death, His blood that poured down from the cross. Colossians 1:15-20 MSG

George Barna has compiled some of the game stats for Team-Church in his book Revolution. The numbers strongly suggest the western church is stuck at the line of scrimmage, deep in their own territory. However Barna’s eye has not been fooled. He is also following the ball on a play that is gaining some yardage. It is being executed by an unexpected player on a part of the field not many are watching … Look at the sideline – something is going on there, behind the coaches.

Most of us do not see this play simply because our eye has been trained to think of “church” as a place or an event. Our conditioning has trained us to see Pastor as Coach and QB. While our eye may be following the institutional church, the ball is actually being carried by the Church, a vast and growing squad of aching souls who are standing up, getting off the pew and declaring, “I am not just a benchwarmer!”

From the Owner’s perspective, the ball has never really been dropped. The players, as they have always been, are scattered strategically on the field. Barna has taken note that many believers are not only getting up off the bench, they are finding their way into smaller groups where they can discover how God has equipped them and how they can make their essential contribution to The Play.

Along with Coach Paul, MwM aspires to encourage all men and women to discover their essential gifts and insert themselves into the line up of friends and family where only love can advance the ball and reverse the momentum of this battle.

Father, May we see the contest with your eyes. May we find our way into the skirmish where our God-given skill sets can be used to devestate the enemy.  Thank You for Life. We look forward to the day when you truly run up the score. So be it.

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