Text: Colossians 1:15-28 (Genesis 18:1-10a; Luke 10:38-42)
We can mistakenly believe that Christ’s work was done when the resurrection took place. In doing this, we can miss our participation in the fulfillment. Our works do make a difference. They do not change the ultimate outcome of God’s work, but they are a part of completing that work. In the letter to the Colossians, Paul says that in his sufferings he is completing what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. When we hear the word “lacking”, we think failure or weakness. Paul is not, however, referring to any failure or weakness on Christ’s part. Instead, the letter refers to the fulfillment found in Christ. Christ’s work was not intended to be completed. Instead, Christ’s work is about life not death. Jesus opened the way for us that can never be closed. Now, our work in Christ fulfills the intention of God from the very foundation of creation. God greets Abraham in this story from Genesis, but careful reading will show that he did not complete that work at that time. In fact, Abraham never saw the fulfillment. Martha was distracted by the work that never gets done and failed to engage relationship with the one who offers eternal life, not completion. Our works are also not about completion. Our works are also not about accomplishment but fulfillment. How are your works fulfilling? What is lacking in your relationship with God and others? Where have you been distracted by accomplishment and lost fulfillment? The Spirit gives us ability not for accomplishment, but that we too might complete what is lacking in Christ’s suffering. This “lacking” is intentional on God’s part, so that we might participate in the fulfillment of God with us.