God, who is Love itself, creates a universe that is good from its beginning (because God is good). Over time, human beings in the image and likeness of God evolve and take their place in this ongoing project of God. Endowed with intelligence and free will, we humans are invited to be God’s friends and to cooperate consciously with God in the development of our world. If we accept this invitation, we will join God in creating cycles of good; we will be the source of actions that flow from love and that touch other people and the rest of creation. God wants the good created world to evolve as good, and we contribute to what God wants when we act as images of God. We help God create cycles of goodness.
The development God intends is a world where human beings live in friendship and harmony with God, with other human beings, and with the whole of creation. I have come to think that this harmonious universe is what Jesus meant by the “kingdom of God.”
—Excerpted from God’s Great Story and You by William A. Barry, SJ