Created for Community

Read: Genesis 1:26-2:3

God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. (v. 27)

In early spring, before leaves come out on trees, the woods around my home fill with short-lived wildflowers. So intricate and tiny, looking fragile, yet tough enough to keep their heads up, blooming through late April snowfalls. They’re dependent on many things: bees, soil, ants, rain, sun, and other plants. I see in them an example of community. Each one so valuable and so unique. Each dependent on many factors to flourish.

We may never know all that it means to be created in God’s image, but we do know that God’s very nature exists within a relationship: three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—honoring one another in perfect unity. Created in God’s image, we’re hardwired to thrive in similar relationships. Yet in contrast to all of the creation that God pronounced “very good” (Gen. 1:31), God says, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him” (2:18).

Our culture idolizes the individual. Yet the critical value of meaningful relationships for health and well-being continues to be well documented. The natural sciences increasingly define the physical world in terms of interdependent relationships. It makes sense, all things coming from our creator, God, who dwells in relationship and calls us to the same. Take some time today to consider ways to build and nurture strong relationships with God, with one another, and with the world.

As you pray, ask God to show you next steps to build, deepen or heal your own relationships.

About the Author

Bonnie Nicholas, LMSW, retired in 2020 after serving as Director of Safe Church Ministry in the Christian Reformed Church in North America.

This entry is part 1 of 7 in the series Called into Community