The reading from the opening of the book of Genesis today tells us that the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep when God created the heavens and earth: God said “Let there be Light”. And the chaos of the void was transformed by God into his beloved creation.
Mark’s gospel for today tells us of John the Baptist appearing in the wilderness – the raw, rough countryside filled with people whose lives were disordered and disfigured by sin, coming to be made new. And as God’s sign in the chaos John washes them and points to the one who will bring the Spirit – Jesus.
Bringing order out of chaos is the eternal work of God in Christ Jesus. From “the Beginning”, to the moments in every person’s life and in the life of the peoples of the world, when chaos and disorder find a hold, God is active and making a way to be make all things new and restored. The disorder we see in our country and in the world today is rooted in the same primordial void over which the Spirit of God moved, as His Word – began to call into being a divine order. Bringing order from chaos is the eternal work of the Church as well – We have all been re-ordered in baptism, as Jesus gave the sign offering himself to John for our sake – for our sins. And like Jesus our identity is stamped as Beloved by God. As we celebrate this feast of His baptism today, may we recall the eternal possibility of renewal and restoration in our world and in our lives, made possible by our own baptisms, and open our lives again to the work God has done for us and the work God entrusts to us.
Creator God, we praise and worship you for your infinite power and love. We thank you that you have washed us clean and that you continue to inspire and refresh us with your presence. Remind us daily of our baptism in Christ and the ever present possibility of a fresh start and new beginning in Him day by day. Lord, in Your mercy, Hear Our Prayer.