YOU are loved, you are valuable you have purpose! (John 3:16)
Before a sculptor creates a magnificent piece of work, he always begins with a grand idea or image. In the beginning, God, the Ultimate Sculptor, had an idea. He said, “Let us create man in our image.” We were made to resemble our Creator. You were God’s grand idea! He declared that each person would be created in His likeness. We are of one kind, called humanity. God created us unified — one race created in His Image. (Psalm 8:4-5)
You might be asking, “Why does it matter whose image I was created in?”
Good question! This is why: God said, “… as a man thinks in his heart, so he is.” Every thought, action and belief you have is shaped by how you view yourself. God wants you to see yourself through His lens: a beautiful creation conceived in His own heart, carefully formed in His own likeness. Long before you were in your mother’s womb, long before man spoke any word over you, God spoke over you. The Bible, His Love Letter to us, tells us that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Think about that: fearfully. Not the kind of fear that means being afraid, but the kind that describes awe or admiration. (Jeremiah 1:5, Psalm 139:15-16)
He was in awe of you when He created you!
He declared that you would resemble His Image, full of His joy, love, goodness, and righteousness. He spoke all your gifts and strengths into you and placed you in the world to bring heaven to earth.
When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden of Eden, they rebelled against God. They wanted to be their own god. They lost the truth of who they were created to be and became separated from the Source of their identity. That is why they instantly felt naked, vulnerable, fearful, guilty, and shameful. We’ve been rebelling ever since. Even so, God still calls His creation “the apple of his eye.” Years after Adam and Eve lived, God continues to remind the human race that we were created a little lower than the heavenly beings. We are royalty because He crowned us with His glory and honor. He made us rulers over all creation — all the flocks, and herds and the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea. (Psalm 8:5)
Rebellion against God has a price. You see, God is perfect, holy and just. Because He is a God of justice, His character could not allow our sin and rebellion to go unpunished. His Son Jesus was willing to take that punishment by dying on the cross. God’s Word tells us about “the Lamb (Jesus) who was slaughtered before the world was made.” How could Jesus have died for our sins “before the world was made”? One day, after reading this and many other scriptures, I got a mental picture of what this might have looked like:
Jesus said, “Father, I want to create them.” God the Father replied, “If You do, You will have to die for them. And without hesitation, Jesus said, “I will!”
God Himself had a plan from the beginning of creation — to bring us back to our true identity. Jesus, His Son, would come and become one of us, and do what Adam didn’t do — completely obey God and live without sin. Once Jesus did that, He then qualified to be the perfect sacrifice for our sin.
Jesus died on the cross for you and me. He took all our sins — past, present and future — on Himself. He essentially told God, “Punish Me for their sins. When they accept my sacrifice as payment for their sins, Your relationship with them can be restored.” It was not easy for God to allow Jesus to take our punishment. Jesus is His only and dearly loved Son. God had to punish Him on the cross in order for us to be free. Yet, God is both just and merciful. He loved us and knew a perfect sacrifice was the only way for us to regain our identity and relationship with Him.
(1 Peter 1:18-19, 1 Corinthians 15:2)
Jesus brought us back to our loving Father God!
When we repent for our sins and accept Him as our Savior, sin no longer separates us! It is our choice to receive Jesus as our substitute. All we have to do is turn to Him, confess we’re a sinner in need of a Savior, believe Jesus is that Savior and receive His sacrifice as payment for our sins. When we do, a beautiful thing happens: Each of us is restored back to our true identity as a child of God. (Ephesians 1:5, Romans 8:30)
While that is a one-time decision, we have to continually ask God to remind us! It is so easy for us to forget how truly loved we are and how valuable God made us. We have to allow Him to renew our minds to the truth of this new identity — children of the living and loving God! We are new creations in Jesus Christ. Dig into God’s Word and discover for yourself the truth about how much you are loved and who you truly are to God. As you do, simply say this prayer: “God, show me more of who You are.” It’s a prayer He will always answer as you wholeheartedly seek Him. Meditate on these truths and allow them to change how you view yourself.
God created you to act and react based on how you see yourself. Whether you realize it or not, He gave you your identity. Studies in brain science tell us that we all have an identity center in the right prefrontal cortex that is shaped by how we see ourselves, through other’s eyes, as we grow up. Man’s study in psychology confirms that how we see ourselves will determine how we feel. We then act out of those feelings. Our actions create consequences, whether bad or good. Our choices determine our destinies. (Romans 12:2, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Romans 6:18, 21-22)
God intended for us to grow up seeing ourselves through His eyes and His love. He intended for our identity to be a security for us —a place of wholeness, joy, peace, and love. It’s a place that will always draw us back to His amazing love for us — our destiny! Walking in His Image in us!
1 John 4:10,15,16-19,1 Peter 2:9, Eph. 2:10, Romans 8:29, Matthew 10:30, Zeph. 3:17, Ps. 18:19, Gen. 3:1, Is. 53:6, Eccl. 7:29,