February 1, 2022
By Pastor Jeff Fox-Kline
Sorry I missed the blog last week. I lost my streak! It turns out there’s this bug going around lately (for the past couple of years), and it’s not a fun one to have. Don’t worry, folks, I’m vaxxed and boosted, doing just fine. But it wasn’t fun.
So here’s my blog from last week:
And it even has a soundtrack!
I hope you enjoyed that blog – it was a labor of love.
Imago Dei: the image of God.
This is a bedrock principle of my theology. I have a few touchstones that guide my sense of vocation and faith.
“‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’”
“He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”
“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.”
1 Corinthians 12:27
“Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.”
And for today, Genesis 1:27
“So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
I read this and I think about all the implications that it has. What does it mean to be made in the image of God? What does that even mean?
I spend a lot of time thinking about what it means, and I’m glad to have that conversation someday with you if you ask. But today I don’t actually care about what it means in a literal sense, but I have been struck breathless for what it means to us.
Every human is made in the image of God.
The very image of God is imprinted on every person you will ever come in contact with. This is breathtaking. You look into the eyes of whoever you meet, and you look into the eyes of God. The bodies we inhabit, the good that we do, the love that we share, the communities that we form – all of these reflect the image of God.
This means something for us. In the same way that when we do to the least of these we do also to Christ, whatever we do to one another we do to God.
In the same way that we are the body of Christ and what we do represents Christ in the world, what we do in the world then becomes reflective of the image of God to the world.
In the same way that the early church devoted itself to these forms and practices to build up the body, what we do with each other can clarify that image in each other.
In the same way that Micah calls us to justice, kindness, and humility; we are imprinted with the image of a liberating God who embodies all of those qualities.
But even more, we are created in the image of a God who is love. Which means that we are created in and as love. We are loved by God, and called to love. We can love as God loves, if we can tap into that image that dwells within.
God created us good. God created us in God’s image.
And we bear the responsibility of this image in the world. But we also bear the bounty of mercy and grace that comes with sharing in this work with God, and all those who share in God’s image.
We are loved. We are worthy. We are enough. We are good.
Will ever take that away from you.
When you feel the image fade in yourself; when others degrade that image in you or your neighbor; when your heart sinks and you feel the weight of human frailty; never ever forget that the image of God is how you are made from the beginning of creation and how you will be long after creation ceases.