Taken from The Relational Soul – We are structured by and for relationships. Our relationships determine whether or not we have and enjoy life. A deep participation in the life of another is the life-blood of the soul. Relational connection is that profound and that necessary. It is that basic.

But the necessity of relational participation is not only a human reality. The relational reality implanted in our DNA is also at the core of the universe. All reality is relational! This is to say, all of creation is designed FOR someone or something else and all creation is designed to receive FROM someone or something. A flourishing universe depends on the relational design of healthy giving and receiving.

From a Christian perspective, the universe receives the gift of life from a God who is present in all of the created order. That is to say, God actually participates in the world and the world finds its life in God. God didn’t just create the world. God sustains the world. God inhabits the world. Without the Spirit of God giving life to the created order it would cease to exist.

This is what Paul affirmed when he said to the Athenians, “For in Him we live and move and exist (Acts 17:28).” He made it clear that “(God) gives life and breath to everything, and He satisfies every need there is (Acts 17:25).” Paul is more explicit and specific in the Book of Colossians. Speaking of Christ’s role in sustaining life he writes, “He (Christ) existed before everything else began and He holds all creation together (Colossians 1:17).” Christ is the source of life, the cosmic nucleus around which all creation revolves. Apart from His continuous, actual relational presence the world would cease to exist.

Taken from The Relational Soul by Richard Plass and James Cofield. Copyright (c) 2014 by Richard Plass and James Cofield. Used by permission of InterVarsity Press, P.O. Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL  60515-1426. www.ivpress.com