The Goodness of God Reflected in All Creation

by Sister William McCue, OSF

The first in a series on active nonviolence from the Sisters of St. Francis, Clinton, Iowa.

The goodness and love of God permeate all of creation! God is good! In his Earlier Rule, St. Francis wrote, “Let us refer everything to God and confess that everything good is His, and thank Him for everything, for all good comes from Him.”

All of creation participates in the outpouring and reflection of God’s goodness.
Realizing that goodness and love are gifts continually given to all creation, Francis loved even the tiniest of creatures. For example, he saw that bees were given honey in winter lest they die from cold. “He admired those industrious workers so greatly that he would often spend whole days watching and praising them.” (1Celano 80)

To truly see every person or element of creation as a reflection of God’s goodness is a blessing. This insight helps me to speak well of others, to smile and to express gratitude even when I am faced with a negative criticism. Basking in the energy of goodness from every pore of our being, we acclaim the words of the Creator, “It is good! It is very good! In you I take delight!”

To ponder the meaning of our experiences is one of the challenges of life. To ponder implies that we hold, carry, and transform tensions in our lives rather than react to them negatively. Sometimes we avoid contact with those who are different from ourselves rather than pondering their inherent goodness and seeking ways to bond with them. Jesus lovingly welcomed the stranger, the foreigner, and the unaccepted. Jesus invites us to widen and deepen our relationships through loving actions. Following in Jesus’ footsteps as exemplified by Francis who lovingly embraced the leper, we, too, can find sweetness where before there was bitterness.

John, a prisoner with whom I corresponded, provided for me an example of how this transformation can come about. Pondering in prison, John had the courage to confront the violence happening around him as a gift because, through this experience, he came to know God and matured in faith.
How consciously and frequently do we celebrate God’s goodness in our daily lives? Do our actions breathe out loving goodness towards ourselves and others, especially the marginalized?

Published in: on April 24, 2015 at 4:03 pm  Leave a Comment  

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