In the I.M.A.G.E. of God

STEPHANIE HUBACH | CONTRIBUTOR Elementary school seems to be the time period when we learn all about different forms of communication. Letter writing. Short stories. Poetry. My younger son Tim, who has Down syndrome, once graced me with a school Valentine poem/project that read something like this: Roses are blue, violets are red. Be careful this crocodile, doesn’t bite off your head. That’s the kind of poetry that only an 8-year-old boy can create. (Thank goodness Hallmark doesn’t hire 8-year-old boys to write their Valentine cards!) One poetic form that I remember learning, and that the Bible actually employs in the Psalms, is the acrostic. Miriam Webster defines an acrostic this way: “a composition usually in verse in which sets of letters (such as the initial or final letters of the lines) taken in order form a word or phrase or a regular sequence of letters of the alphabet.” Over the years, I’ve written many pieces on the image of God. For a change of pace this time, let’s try an acrostic. Acrostics can make it easy to remember things—so maybe this format will help all of us to remember, throughout the year, what it means to be created in the image of God. I.M.A.G.E.

In the I.M.A.G.E. of God2022-05-04T00:39:52+00:00

The Joy of Not Being Needed

ELIZABETH GARN|GUEST There are times when I hear my name called from another room or when my phone dings with another email, that my shoulders droop and I let out a long, exhausted sigh. Someone needs me again. I don’t know if you’ve felt this way, but trying to juggle work, a pandemic, family life, and everything else that needs my attention can be exhausting. These days, I often feel like I’m needed all day long. And while being needed is wonderful, it’s also hard. Needed implies deadlines, expectations, and a constant stream of things that require my attention. It’s nice to be needed and I love the life that God has given me. But I have also found that as nice as it is to be needed, I long to be wanted more. Wanted, not for what I can do, but simply for being me. For a long time, I felt this way about my relationship with God as well. I thought he created me because he needed someone to worship him or fill some void. I thought he had a list of things he needed me to accomplish for him; that he needed me to serve him. Somewhere along the way, I came to believe that my purpose as a child of God was about what I do. It’s an exhausting, defeating, and discouraging way to live and I found myself constantly striving to do enough. I found hope, however, when I learned that we aren’t needed by God, instead, we are very, very wanted. The Beauty of “us” Genesis 1:26 says, “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” In this verse, the Triune God pauses the creation narrative to announce what he’s about to do— he is going to create humans. It’s one of my favorite passages in the whole Bible. It’s laden with hope, meaning, and purpose. God is going to create us and he’s going to do it for a very specific reason: we are going to be his images on the earth. We will reflect him, represent him, and declare his glory to the whole earth. It’s the heart of our purpose!...

The Joy of Not Being Needed2022-05-04T23:13:50+00:00

He Must Increase

LAURA BOOZ|GUEST I don’t know about you, but I feel so much pressure to make a name for myself, be all that I can be, and to maximize my potential. I feel like we’re all in a race to promote and protect ourselves, to achieve self-actualization the fastest. I’m so tired of focusing on me, me, me. That’s why today I’m asking myself, would you invest your life to promote someone else? Instead of maximizing your own potential, you’d maximize theirs. Instead of working hard to advance your own agenda, you’d promote their message, desires, and life’s calling. Instead of building your own audience, pursuing your own happiness, earning your own reward, and leaving your own legacy, you’d be all about theirs, theirs, theirs, theirs. How would that feel?

He Must Increase2022-05-08T00:07:28+00:00
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