The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.
Weeds take over. It’s in their nature. My wife and I can testify to this. Left unchecked, our yard becomes a safe haven for weeds of all sorts to take up root and spread.
We looked out one day at the chaos that was our yard, and decided to do something. Go to war over the weeds. Years of overgrown mess were no match for two determined homeowners. It took work. It took sweat. It took time. But in the end, the grass grew where it should, the flowers budded when they were supposed to, and the untamed vines were given a trellis to climb up to their heart’s content.
Order out of chaos. That is the story of our little garden. That is the story of creation.
The state of the world is clearly depicted in Genesis 1:2: “formless and void.” The Hebrew is Toho and Boho. You do not need to remember that—they are just fun to say.
As you read the rest of the creation account, God masterfully addresses these two issues. He takes the first three days to change the formlessness. He sparks light, separates waters, carves out land, brings forth trees and plants and fruits. By the end of day three the first issue is resolved. No longer is the world formless, but now formed.
The next three days God fills the void. He overflows the world with lights, swarms of creatures in the air, in the waters, and on the ground. He creates a self-sustaining world of life that he then blesses.
A casual reader may miss the symmetry in this. But even the order shows the poetic nature of God.
Day One: Light
Day Four: Lights
Day Two: Sea & Sky
Day Five: Fish & Birds
Day Three: Land & Vegetation
Day Six: Animals & Humanity
Formless, now formed. Void, now filled. That is the nature of our God. To that which is formless, he desires to craft and shape. To that which is void of life, he desires to fill.
God cannot help but to bring form and fullness to all he touches.
As you fast forward through the story, you once again see a world that is without form, structure, purpose, void of any true life. It is into that world, that God again moved into.
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth . . . For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. (John 1:14,16)
It is from the fullness of God that he brings fullness to the world. He moves into the garden of our lives and pulls the weeds of bad habits, old hurts, and perpetual sin that have taken deep roots in our hearts. But then he plants the Word of God so that our lives bear good fruit to be pleasing to him and a blessing to others.
The fullness of life is found in Christ. And it is from his fullness that we receive fullness: grace upon grace to take the graveyards of our hearts and make gardens of delight.