Created in God’s Image- but what does that mean?

How were you made and what were you made for? Two questions you have likely asked yourself. Read on to find out what it really means to be fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of God.

What do you see when you look in the mirror?

You may immediately see brown hair and green eyes, freckles and a chickenpox scar. You might see ears that stick out just a little too much for your liking. Maybe you see fine lines and wrinkles that tell your age. 

Do you see kindness? Do you see love? Do patience and acceptance stare back at you? Are you looking at forgiveness and grace? Is there the reflection of joy and contentment?

Are you accompanied by anger and resentment? Is hatred present? Is bitterness there?

It’s quite possible you see all of this. On any given day. Depending on your mood. Depending on your circumstance.

But what do you think God sees? Genesis 1:26-31 tells us.

So God created human beings in his own image.
In the image of God he created them;
Male and female he created them.
Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful
And multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign
Over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky,
And all the animals that scurry along the ground.”
Then God said, “Look! I have given you every 
Seed-bearing plant throughout the earth and
All the fruit trees for your food. And I have 
Given every green plant as food for all the wild
Animals, the birds in the sky, and the small
Animals that scurry along the ground—
Everything that has life.” And that is what happened.
Then God looked over all he had made, and
He saw that it was very good. 

Wow, that’s a lot! So much that you may have to read it a few times to really divulge what it is exactly God sees when he sees you. 

More specifically, here Genesis does more than describe what God sees; it illustrates in detail how He made us and what we are made for.

Did you catch the first two lines where it said we are made in his own image, in the image of God? This is so significant because it reveals who God is when he fashioned us.   

So if we are made in his image, according to the word, then we are:

  • Made purposefully and specifically
  • Made to be active, to be productive
  • Made to be responsible, to be stewards of what is given us

And when God was done making us, what did he do? He provided for us.

And then he determined that what he had made was good. Why? Because it was His design. Because He loves us and desires us. Because He wants so much for us.

And how much so? That He would make us in His image. To be like Him.

What a gift! What knowledge! What a revelation! What a concept to embrace!

Before we go any further, this is not a piece promoting self but a piece highlighting the beautiful, masterful character of God in us when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.

You see, after the fall of Adam and Eve, God developed a plan to redeem us, to restore us so that we may once again be near to Him, be heirs to the throne, and enjoy eternal life with Him in Heaven. 

God’s design for us from the beginning was one of purity, love, unity, and life. We see this in Genesis 2 when He placed the tree of life in the center of the Garden of Eden as food for man. 

He then instructed man not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. But we didn’t listen. Hence the fall and the need for a savior. 

So let’s go back to the initial question. What do you see when you look in the mirror? 

To continue answering this, I want us to focus on Genesis 3:11.

“Who told you that you were naked?” The Lord God asked.

It was during my second, closer reading of Genesis that this one line caught my attention. Adam and Eve were aware of their nakedness because of their disobedience when they ate from the forbidden tree. 

God never intended for them to experience shame or guilt associated with their nakedness, for they were beautifully and wonderfully made in His image. What they were feeling was the consequence of sin. And sin can make us feel ugly. 

I wonder how many of us have a word we would put in that blank because we have determined that we are something far worse than what God sees.

Maybe your question sounds like this: 

Who told you that you were filthy?

Who told you that you were despicable?

Who told you that you were depressed?

Who told you that you were lost?

Who told you that you were weak?

Who told you that you were insignificant?

Who told you that you were a waste?

Who told you that you were a failure?

Who told you that you were a disappointment?

Who told you that you were a thief?

Who told you that you were a cutter?

My sweet friend, you are NOT these things when you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. When you trust Him to restore you, to renew you, to revive you, you are forgiven and receive grace. 

Ephesians 2:8-10 is our proof.

"God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago."

Philippians 4:8-9 instructs us how to focus our thoughts and train our thinking.

"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise."

Why? Because we are made in the image of God. He made us to be so and do so. He planned our redemption and restoration. It is his design. 

Hallelujah! This is fantastic news! This means there is hope for all of us!

It’s time to rewrite your question. It’s time to rewrite your present. It’s time to write your future.

Maybe it could sound like this: 

With Jesus Christ I am:

Holy

Forgiven

Cleansed

Innocent

Beautiful

Whole

Worthy

Loved

Powerful

Capable

Saved

Freed

Confident

Victorious

Strong

You are not these things because I say you are. You are these things because the Word says you can be.

It says so in Ephesians 2:19-22.

"So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people. You are members of God’s family. Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself. We are carefully joined together in him, becoming a holy temple for the Lord. Through him you Gentiles are also being made part of this dwelling where God lives by his Spirit."

It’s all there—you are a holy, strong, worthy, significant, loved, welcomed, invited member of His family.

So tell me now what you see when you look in the mirror. How were you made? What are you made for?