Jul 26, 2013

imago Dei // link up

Simple Moments Stick

"Then God said, "Let us make man in our own image
after Our own likeness . . . 
"So God created man in His own image
in the image of God He created him; 
male and female He created them".
[ G e n e s i s  1 : 2 6 - 2 7 ]

Image. What does that word conjure up when you hear it? The first thoughts that come to me include "picture", "reflection", "vision",  and "mirror".

Isn't it amazing that nothing else in all of creation can declare that it was created in God's image? The trees cannot boast it. The birds cannot declare it. Only humans are marked as image-bearers of the Creator God. But wait, did you catch the fifth word in the above verse? Us. The Trinity created us. Father. Son. Holy Spirit. And not only that, but the Trinity created us to image the Trinity
"You are created in the image of God, and nothing short of God will satisfy you."
 A.W. Tozer.
Why is it significant that we are image-bearers of God?

The image that we bear enables us to talk with God. Again, nothing else in creation can do this. We therefore are, what Bible teacher Paul Tripp calls, "revelation revealers". We can hear the Word of God and can therefore live out of that revelation. He speaks through us mainly through the Bible and we respond through songs and prayer. As the often-faltering, easily-shaken humans that we are, it is pivotal to hear and speak to God, for that is how we can learn to image Him more fully.
"To image the real Trinitarian God of the Bible is to make Him visible to the world . . .
Image is both personal and communal. By personal, we mean that we as individual worshipers must continually ask wether we are good reflections of our God. By communal, we mean that churches, families, and Christian communities must continually ask whether they are good reflections of God to one another and the world." Mark Driscoll, Doctrine
We exist to mirror God. As girls, we have at least a few mirrors in our homes, am I right? But do you own a cracked mirror? It's rather useless, right? It distorts and gives an incorrect representation of what is meant to be imaged. My full-length mirror, for example, has a large crack at the top, so whenever I check my outfit in the morning, I am rudely greeted with an odd, double-headed version of myself because of that particularly placed crack. Not very flattering, I would say. Biblical counselor Ed Welch uses the analogy of humans as broken mirrors that are in desperate need of being put back together by God so that we can reflect God more and more. This is a life-long process and it can often be painful. The sharp edges of glass cut. I have personally seen this when God has been reconstructing "my mirror". My own pride and stubbornness have led to shattered pieces that God graciously and masterfully works on, but it is often a hard and painful process to letting go of me and holding onto Him. Some cracks take days, while others take years. But the Creator God is faithful.

Honestly, I reflect the glory and goodness of God poorly and infrequently. But what joy and hope that because of Jesus, who happens to be the ultimate image of God, the proverbial broken mirror has a chance at restoration. Because of the Gospel, I have hope.

We are reminded in Romans 8:29 that we are "conformed to the image of God", meaning that God's grace enables us to mirror Jesus more and more. And in our worse moments when that mirror seems shattered or marred because of our sin, we are called to humble repentance and daily deciding that we desire to image God.

The significance of being made in the image of God is also important because it gives us purpose. The fact that God declares that we are fashioned after His own likeness gives us a reason for living a life fully surrendered to Him.

How can we image God?

If we want to image God well, then we must know who God is. And if we want to know who God is, we have to do our homework. Study His word and reflect on His attributes (I have done this through journaling who the Bible says He is and it made a huge impact on how I prayed and trusted in God). Fill your car and home with praise songs that declare who He is. Listen to teachings that focus on all of Him, not just the parts that are socially acceptable (yes, God is loving, but He is also just). Fill your life with people who speak of Him in the way that His Word declares of Him (the Bible -- not a blog, movie, or book -- has the ultimate say in who God is).

So, what does a life that images God even look like? Is it possible?

We image God when we choose to serve Him, especially in the small things that go unnoticed by the human eye.

We image God by respecting human life. Our hearts should bleed for the weak, oppressed, sick, & unborn.

We image God through our thankfulness towards God even in the days of suffering and tears.

We image God when we forgive those who have wronged us.

We image God when we reflect the Trinity by worshiping through our mind, body, and soul.

We image God by resting in who He says we are, not who we or the rest of the world may think we are. He named us and declared we are in His image. His opinion trumps any other opinion of man.

This quote serves as a great concluding thought:
"In this valiant effort we must constantly choose to believe the truth -- that reflecting God alone is a great life. It is not an easy life, or a simple life, or a perfect life. But it is a wonderful life that is filled with evidences of God's grace, healing from our past, and hope for our future. Furthermore, because mirroring God is the essence of our true humanity, as we reflect His glory we discover the source of our deepest joy, even when life hurts the most" M. Driscoll, Doctrine.
imago Dei. Oh, what beauty in this truth.


(p.s. check out the picture link at the top of the post to read what 
being In His Image looks like to other Christian bloggers!)

13 comments:

  1. I LOVED this post! And I loved the way you talked about God putting back together our broken "mirrors". Such a perfect analogy for this topic. You have such wisdom and insight girl, I am truly inspired! Your words here definitely shook me and taught me SO much. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. Thank you, Julie! That means a lot! I am a picture-person, meaning that I love analogies and allegories... They really help me understand Truths. And the mirror analogy started off as something I read in a book on Christian doctrine, and then I ran with it a bit.

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  2. I love this post! I love the idea that we are mirrors of God, reflecting Him! Thank you SO MUCH for linking up! :-)

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    1. Thank you, Susannah for hosting the link up! I love the idea of Christian women sharing thoughts and lessons that God is speaking into our hearts. It makes me feel like we are living the call to be a spiritual family ... We're sisters sharing the good news. We each hear it a bit differently because the Holy Spirit shows us what we need in our specific needs, and yet when we share, we can each learn from each other. It is truly a blessing to learn from each other!

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  3. Love this! Wonderfully written, girl! Thank you for sharing your heart.

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    1. Thank you, Angela! I just read yours and really like how you took it personally and declared how you truly are in his image. Whenever the enemy tries to persuade you otherwise, you can cling to the truths that you typed in that post!

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  4. "Isn't it amazing that nothing else in all of creation can declare that it was created in God's image?" YES. Yes, it is. And it's so humbling and comforting, too! :)

    The broken mirror analogy is BRILLIANT, my friend. I all too often see reflection through that broken mirror but like you said, I need to give my all to Him, surrender, and let Him fix it so I can see myself and those around me with a clearer vision.

    Beautifully written, friend!

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    1. That is so true, Kiki . . . It becomes hard to see others through a marred mirror, making us more apt to be bitter, judgmental, and unloving towards those who need love and compassion the most. Sometimes when my eyeglasses are dirty enough that I have to wipe them, I'll think of that thought too... I am only seeing a distorted view and Jesus desires me to see a pure view of Himself, but he also desires to see a true view of myself because I am in Christ.

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  5. Hey girl! I LOVE your blog and your heart for Jesus! It's beautiful! :)

    Love this post too!

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    1. Thank you, Abigail!! Right back atchya! You are inspiring, my friend! P.S. I have my eyes on several of the necklaces and I'm trying to be a good, responsible budget-er (is that even a word) the rest of this month before I let myself buy something... but I am so excited to purchase one of the beautiful pieces! i LOVE the mission behind Noonday!

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  6. Elle- Thank you so much for sharing about how our image of God is such an important part of reflecting the image. I feel like that's left out some times! Your AW Tozer quote reminded me of another AW Tozer quote-- "“What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” If we spend our whole lives responding to the wrong image of God, we are going to be really sorry. Our whole lives are a response to who God is, which is why it's the most important thing!!! I loved reading your post :)

    Lauren
    How-beautiful-are-the-feet.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi Lauren! Thank you for your comments! I love that AW Tozer quote you mentioned! What a wise man! You're so right about our lives being a response to who God is! It's hard to trust in His love, His plan, His purpose, etc. if we do not know who He is!

      I look forward to reading your posts! Funny story, when I first started blogging a few years ago, I named the blog Beautiful Feet of Hope, very similar to yours! And the same Romans verse spoke to me too! I don't know if you listen to Lecrae but the song "Beautiful Feet" is so amazing and inspired that name... I shortened it a while ago because people kept asking about the "feet" part (lol) , but I miss the meaning behind it! Our feet should always be seeking to be walking after His steps!

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  7. Awesome post. We totally need to be molded into God's image daily. I love that analogy that you used about broken mirros so true.

    As humans we are truly blessed that we along have this relationship with God. Not even the angels experience God the way that we do. This post truly gets to the heart of what being made in His image is all about.

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I love to hear your thoughts!

Elle Alice