There's a fantastic podcast series on Ancient Faith Radio called Finding the Freedom to Live. (If you, or anyone you know, are struggling with porn/sex addiction or want to understand the theology of icons, this podcast series is an invaluable resource.) In one episode of the podcast, Andrew Williams makes a striking proposition:
Creation isn't over.
At first, this proposition shocked me. How could this be? Didn't God rest from His creative work on the seventh day? What is this guy talking about? I know I'm new to Orthodoxy, but how can this be? But this was only half of Andrew's thought.
Creation isn't over, and we're partaking in it... including in the ongoing creation of ourselves. - Andrew Williams
This is astounding. The suggestion that the creation of the universe is still in process and that humanity is playing a significant role in it is truly breathtaking. To suggest that humanity is participating in creation is to assert that all people wield a kind of power that I'd never considered.
God Creates Man
Man received the breath of God and came into existence. (Genesis 2:7). We are not completely autonomous, as we are wont to think. We were formed by the dust of the Earth and we owe our very existence to God, who breathed life into us. Therefore, we are uniquely connected to God and all of His creation.
Man Creates Sin
As a modern person in the West, I tend to think of myself in a vacuum, but the result is that I inadvertently alienate myself from everything and everyone else. St. Maximus the Confessor perceived this as well.
"The self-love and cleverness of men, alienating them from each other and perverting the law, have cut our single human nature into many fragments." - St. Maximus the Confessor