Who am I?
Remembering that you are a human being is an odd thing. The moments in which you realize you are a fragile, broken creature—and yet, so much more than that—can be both overwhelming and freeing.
As a human being, you were created in Imago Dei—which is Latin for “the Image of God.” As it clearly says in Genesis 1:27 (ESV): “God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”
But that’s only where it starts.
God Created ALL Humans in His Image
The fact that humanity bears God’s Image is unchanging, and it isn’t something that can be taken away from you! Sin doesn’t remove that core truth from you or any other human. While the implications of the Fall corrupt it, God’s Image stays and will forever be a part of us as people. God created humankind with care even when He knew they would turn away from Him—the greatest Artist knew His greatest masterpiece would rebel.
But that’s only the first chapter of the story.
As bearers of the Imago Dei, we are set apart from animals and the rest of creation as a whole. The Imago Dei is what unites each individual—even those who try (whether intentionally or not) to break that Image or refuse to believe that their existence is neither coincidental nor accidental. Believer or not, everyone is His Image-bearer.
God Created Each of Us Uniquely
God knew exactly what He was doing when He created you.
He knew exactly what kind of person you would become, and He knew exactly what plans He had for your life before you even had an inkling of a thought. God designed your soul uniquely; you are “fearfully and wonderfully made,” as David writes in Psalm 139. “My frame was not hidden from you when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth,” he ponders. “Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them” (Psalm 139:14–16 ESV). Can you imagine Someone who loves you that much?
While we’re all united by the fact that we bear the Imago Dei, God has also set us apart from each other by creating us each individually with our own unique differences, gifts, personalities, appearances, and so on. No two people are exactly alike. While our sinful nature has caused tension and built walls between us because of the ways in which we’re different, I hope you also view these differences as an enormous gift to all humanity, sinners and saints. The ways we are unique are a picture of how we each reflect different qualities of God.
God Set You Apart for an Eternal Purpose
If you have decided to follow Christ, you’re set apart for a purpose that extends through eternity. This purpose—sanctification—is clearly described in Romans 6:22 (ESV): “But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.” Each and every one of us as humans have unique abilities, and when we are set apart through salvation, these abilities can be redeemed in God’s Kingdom on Earth.
With the redemption that comes through salvation, we have “put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator” (Colossians 3:10 ESV). You may be a broken sinner who feels wilted and incomplete more often than not. But you are growing and changing because of what Jesus has done for you. You are becoming a fully unique mirror of God—the way He designed you in the beginning.
As His follower, you have been chosen by Christ and called to stand out, to be a bright reflection of the Image He bestowed upon you as His creation—His child and His masterpiece!
When this redemption is fully complete and the human restoration process of becoming “the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:24 ESV) has been fulfilled—when Christ returns and the sin that has separated us no longer separates—your reflection of the glory of God will shine brighter and more beautifully than ever before (1 Corinthians 13:12). I believe we will showcase our unique differences on the New Earth in a perfected sense.
Things will be the way they were supposed to be at last, as we will truly abide in God’s presence forever, clothed in His glory and light (Revelation 21–22). You will be home. This is what you were created for.
What Does This Mean for Now?
Fitting in with the rest of the world was never part of the plan. God has called each of us to different purposes for our time on this earth as well as in eternity. As Jesus prays in John 17:15–19 (ESV), “I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.”
In the end, the Imago Dei truth should change the way you view yourself, others, and the world. You are broken but beautiful, being shaped more perfectly in the Image of God. “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2 ESV). Your fellow humans are all also gifted with the Image of God, and you should love them. This world is not your home—you belong in the restored world, where you will be restored.
What do you think is one of the most unique, beautiful pieces of the Image of God? How might refocusing on the restoration of the Image of God help you live a set-apart life? Let us know in the comments!
Comment below, Roses, and let’s uplift each other!
Article Written by
Ryan Elizabeth creates to remind you that life is beautiful and strange. She believes that beauty can be found in the most ordinary of places if we look for it, and it’s her mission to bring that message out in her stories. In her other writings, she discusses creativity, inspiration, and the wonder that can be found in the fact that we are created in the image of God. You can find her on Instagram.
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