So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. – Genesis 1:27
So many of us have read this verse and have skipped over the meaning of being created in “his own image”. In the image of God. We. Were. Created. I don’t know if I have ever thought of this before. Or if I have, why haven’t I lived it out?
The world has an image of what we all should look like. For females, we should be voluptuous with sexy everything (body, hair, face, clothes, shoes). Men should be tall, chiseled. There is this standard that we (I) all strive for. We seek to look like the image the world desires when we are already made in the Perfect image of God.
Of course, maintaining the image of God requires work and sacrifice. We must maintain the standard of His image. But what does created in His image mean? Let’s take a look at a couple of characteristics of His image: health and strength.
Health. Does this mean thin? I don’t think so. I am thin, but I am far from healthy. I don’t eat or exercise as I should. I know people, both lighter and heavier, that are much more healthy than I am. But being healthy isn’t only about our physical bodies. Healthy can also refer to our emotional and spiritual self. If we are exercising and maintaining a healthy weight, but are continuously filling our hearts and minds with junk, there is no value in our working out our physical bodies. Jesus kept up His physical body (He walked everywhere. I am quite certain He was physically healthy.). He also kept up with His emotional and spiritual self (Scripture after Scripture refers to Him praying and seeking God.).
Strength. With health comes strength. We are in a battle. Whether a believer or not. Everyday is a battle. We fight for our happiness, our families, and, too often, our sanity. Everyday we make life altering choices which determine who and what we are fighting for. Some of these battles require physical strength, but more so, our hearts and minds need to be strong. Jesus was a perfect example of this multi-level strength. His physical strength allowed Him to walk all over the region. His physical strength also helped Him carry the cross to Calvary. However, if His heart and mind were not as strong, His body could not have made it through such torture.
We were created in His image. In the image of a Healthy and Strong God.
Created in the image of God means we were given bodies and minds that are in His likeness. When He sees us, He sees Himself; He sees Perfection. However, this Perfection isn’t self-maintaining. As Jesus taught us, we must choose everyday to maintain such health and strength. Unlike Jesus who knew what was ahead for Him and why He needed to maintain, we have no idea what today or tomorrow will bring. We, therefore as Jesus did, need to be prepared to reveal His image when we win and when we are bloodied and bruised.