You are valuable, you are loved, and someone knows you even better than you know yourself. There is an image and likeness imprinted upon your being that is the basis of your value … a value beyond your wildest dreams.
Coins used to have the face of the person who guaranteed their value, minted onto them. Any note or coin has a guarantor, a person or institution that guarantees its value. Even if a coin gets lost, the coin never loses it’s value.
The one who invented and designed you, stamped you with His own image and likeness.
He knows you better than you know yourself … He knew you even before you were born. You might not know Him, but He has always known you. You might not be aware of Him, but He has always had you on His mind.
You might think ‘why’ … why would anyone have such an obsession with me. Well, the creator of this universe sees a value and a beauty in you beyond anything in this natural world. He even sees a possibility of romance!
When, Where and Why you began.
Whatever age you are, you have a beginning that cannot be measured in time.
You have the most awesome origin. In the beginning, before creation, before time as we experience it, before the existence of evil, there was a dynamic exchange of love, a relationship without boundaries, an enjoyment of total abandonment … a being we now call God. It was in the very midst of this fiery love, at the core of this passion, that the idea of … you came into being!
The God who is love planned to share this love with beings created in His image and likeness. This God, who is all-knowing and able to accomplish all of His purposes, planned a love-affair that would span over eons and conclude with a final victory in which His love conquered all – no contradiction; no evil.
This good news is not some new idea, but the ancient, original thought of God.
Let’s imagine this beginning, let’s allow the spirit of God to draw us to this place in which all things had their origin. Although no science can explain it, although the greatest minds have tried and failed to define it, God is confident that you are able to comprehend the unsearchable; to appreciate the motivation that gave you birth; to remember where you began. In this place there is no space, yet no limit; no creation, yet no emptiness – there is only God in all His fullness. He is not lonely or in lack. It is out of His fulness, out of the overflow of love that you are conceived.
God did not imagine a pet that would simply entertain Him! This God-dream is about a being who has the capacity to intelligently appreciate, to receive, to produce and to exchange the same quality of love that flows within God. His plan is not vague or speculative philosophy, but clear and specific … so clear, that He uniquely identifies and names the individuals who would form part of the plan and become part of creation. And so before the foundation of this world, He saw you in Christ. At this point, He made up His mind about you! No matter what detours, no matter what contradictions would come, He determined that you would be His treasure – blameless and innocent before Him in love.
When did you begin?
Before creation, before time itself.
Where did you begin?
In the very heart of love, a love relationship we call God.
Why did you begin?
To be loved, adored … and ultimately for that love to be awakened in you.
The Word made flesh
The original, authentic Word was face to face with God from the very beginning. God Himself is the content of this communication – revealing His personal presence and unique expression in all that exists.
In fact there is nothing original or innovative outside of Him! He is the only Creator and the source of all inspiration and creativity. Everything that is, has ‘Made by God’ stamped on its existence.
The very life of God is what ignited the existence of man. This original light still shines even in darkness and no amount of darkness can put this light out. (John 1:1-5 Breath of Life)
The time lapse between the original thought of God and now is obviously vast. Has this original thought not been lost through time?
No, this authentic dream began before time and was preserved, set apart, in a person called Jesus Christ. In Him the logic of God was kept until the right time when it was made visible in flesh. He came and demonstrated in human form, the kind of life God had in mind from the very beginning … a life where God and man is so fully united that we cannot even tell them apart.
Man began in God. No matter how far man has fallen from his original place of innocence, God has never been confused about the true identity of man.
Jesus Christ is the place, the event and the person in which God and man meet once again. In Christ Jesus, God has taken the initiative to reconcile man back to Himself – to restore man to blameless innocence.
Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man, and as such does not only represent God’s initiative, He also represents man’s perfect response of faith to God’s initiative.
Jesus reveals the heart of God more than any other story ever told or any scripture ever written. In Him God reveals that He does not want to be God apart from us. He does not want to be a distant or unknowable God. The only way in which He wants to be God, is with man, in man, and as a man.
Jesus reveals the truth about man more accurately than any other story, or even the factual history of man. In Him we see that the only way to be fully man, the only way to be fully free, is in union with God.
This passion of God to restore man to that place of union, would drive Him to pay any price, to go to any depth to see it accomplished. And so in the act of becoming man, He places Himself in a position of conflict. Everything that has ever stood between God and man, every obstacle and every form of separation (called sin in the Bible) would meet and come to a final conclusion in this God-man, Christ Jesus.
When your timeless Creator became a man, He mystically united Himself with you, so that He could bring an end to everything that stood between you and release you to be fully and truly yourself again. In this unity He faced everything you faced … and conquered! In His death, you died! That old state of being, separated from Him and united with sin, was brought to a final end in Him. He has wiped your slate clean, forgiven you of every wrongdoing.
In His resurrection, you were resurrected to newness of life – that original life that God imagined for you from the beginning. In His ascension, you were raised to the most glorious place of honour – a place where God delights in you!
The only thing that has ever kept you from enjoying these realities, is blindness. Not seeing what He sees, keeps us from enjoying what He enjoys. But these very words you are reading now, are reminding you of your union with Him.
As for me, I shall behold thy face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied, when I awake in thy likeness (Psalm 17:15)
What should I do?
You might ask, what should I do … how does one respond to such news? Well the good news is that the hard work has already been done for you! Jesus defeated everything that stood between you! Gratitude … love awakened, is all that’s left to do. Some call it faith.
Here’s a simple suggestion to give expression to this faith. Turn your focus inward. Become aware of the One who made you and united Himself with you … within you. In your own thoughts and words respond … something like: Thank you for who You are and what You have done for me. As You gave yourself in love to me, in Jesus Christ, I give myself in love to You. You made me in Your image and likeness, I acknowledge Your ownership. You made me to be loved … here I am, love me!