At worship practice this week one of the girls asked about what it means to be made in the image of God. Part of our weekly devotional was about God being spirit. She wanted to know if our being made in the image of God meant that God also had a physical body with arms and legs like us. She seemed to later be slightly embarrassed thinking that maybe it was a silly question, but it’s definitely not. It’s kept me thinking that’s for sure.
I’m honestly not sure if God has a physical body. I know that He is spirit and he is without limitations. I do however think that we may be looking at the scripture a little backwards. When someone sees my children, for instance, they always look for me and my husband in them. They will search their features to see who has my eyes or my husbands smile. People will say Matthew (my son) looks so much like Samuel (my husband). I’ve never heard anyone tell me I look like my children. They say my children look like me.
So maybe instead of looking for our characteristics in God we should be looking for God’s characteristics in us. Do I really look like God? Jesus had beautiful feet that brought the good news of salvation. Do my feet bring the good news of salvation? God is love. When people see me do they see love? God is wise. Does what I do and say reflect that wisdom?
If God made us in His image, but we don’t look like him, what does that say about us? My oldest son Josiah doesn’t really like me to fix his hair. As his mother I still try on occasion, but the result is usually the same. I fix his hair and as soon as he is out of arms reach his hands go to his hair and he intentionally messes it up. Does that mean that I didn’t fix his hair? Although God made us in his image if we mess ourselves up we may not always look like Him. I want to be the image of Christ. But to do that I must know Him, imitate Him, and learn from Him.
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning - - the sixth day.