What makes you special? What makes you stand out? Maybe it’s athletics, academics, the freckles on your nose, or your ability to recite pi to 314 decimal places. Think about that for just a second.
I want to touch on Identity a little bit here. It is a theme that has – and will likely continue to – come up in several of my posts.
It is also a lesson that God has really been working on in me a lot lately, and especially pointing out to me how important it is to really know who we are.
So what the heck, why not just call this the first in an unofficial series. The Who I Am series.
Alright, so let’s go back to my original question. What makes you special? What makes you unique and different? Now maybe a little bit more of a “big picture” view: What makes us as humans unique from anything else in Creation? Or are we different? What’s to say that we’re not really just like the apes that swing on trees?
There is only one difference between us (human beings) and other mammals (or really any other creature). I know that science people are going to have a rebuttal on this one, but just hear me out. I’m talking overarching differences, not our DNA makeup.
We are like all other creatures….EXCEPT for the fact that we are made in the image of God.
There is no other species, genus, phylum, class, whatever to which this statement could be accurately applied. Genesis doesn’t hold the Creation story of how God made apes and fish and humans and bears in His image. No. Humans were created in His image; male and female He created them.
This is the fundamental difference between us and all the rest of Creation, and it is a big statement. Why? Because it’s defining. It’s what makes us special, essentially and from the beginning. We are the only created beings that were created in the image of God. That’s gotta be saying something, right?
And you know what, I think that this ticked Satan off. He was proud, and got kicked out for wanting God’s place (to put it in quick words). He couldn’t be like God; end of story. And then here comes man, made in the image of God, and therefore more like God than he (Lucifer) could ever be.
Ouchhhhh. That had to burn his ego. This is (at least part of) why he attacks our identity so much. If we were to truly recognize who we are and live that way, he’d be in big trouble. Add “gigantic ego”, “pride”, and “overwhelming jealousy” to the pot and you have a recipe for a big, fat, let’s-take-out-their-identity stew. And this stew has been spilled everywhere. It’s a pervasive theme throughout every facet of society. Social media: try to get others to see how cool you are, maybe get bullied in the process. Magazines and advertisements: you’re not good enough the way you are; just frankly unacceptable. You must fit into this ridiculous mold because “who you are” is what you look like. Entertainment: traditional roles of family and friends bashed, the outliers get attention, and you’re left wondering how you should act.
I believe that identity is at the root of many trials, as well as lessons. In fact, it seems lately that everything I read in the Word has some sort of undertone of identity in it. I’ll get more into this later on in the series, but I’d like to challenge you to keep an eye out for this as you read the Bible. Ask What does this say about how God sees me? What does this say about how I should act/be? How would taking this lesson to heart affect how I see myself?
What would happen if we asked these same questions to everything that we allow into our minds? The latest episode of the Bachelor(ette), Secret Life of the American Teenager, even American Idol and popular radio. What messages do these declare about who you are? What is emphasized and glorified?
More importantly; how do the answers that secular sources give match up with what God says about you?
They don’t. At all. Chew on that one for a bit.
You were created in the image of God. And you are worth more than what you have been told.