15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.
Yesterday, we affirmed (from Genesis 1:27) that we are all created in the image of God. We hold the imago Dei in our souls. And part of our work here in this life is to recognize that divine DNA in ourselves and in each other. Coming to know and love this image of God helps us grow into our true selves, and becomes the basis for love, grace, mercy, compassion, generosity, and justice with others.
But how do we recognize the divine in ourselves, let alone others? It can take some work. It takes reflection on yourself, your truest nature, who you are when you are at your best. Who are you when you love deeply, give generously, forgive gracefully? What are you like when you feel deeply loved, full of joy or full of peace?
The German theologian, Meister Eckhart said, “My work is to free myself of myself so that [God] can be born in me.” I find this to be so true. I have to get out of the way of myself, let go of pretenses, disappointments, suffering, and ill will, to connect with God in my soul. And it is in those moments that I know I am being all God created me to be. With practice, I am learning to recognize the imago Dei in myself, even in the midst of pretense, disappointment, suffering and ill will toward others. And the moment I catch a glimpse of God in myself, I find peace. Which makes it easier to then see that same divine image in others.
Just as Christ is the full image of God, we should be image bearers as well. What is masking that image in you? What prevents you from seeing the image of God in yourself?
God of all Creation, thank you for creating me in your image. Help me grow into that image and become the truest version of myself. Show me the image of God in every face I encounter. Help me grow in my love for you and others. Give me humility, grace, and compassion. Let me lead others to recognize your image in them as well. I love you, Lord. Amen.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.