In Genesis 1:26-27, we read that God created man in his own image and
likeness. As a parent, I can somewhat liken this idea to the fact that our children carry our genes and in doing so, carry our image and our likeness. Sometimes they appear more like us than other times, in both physical appearance as well as personality and character
traits. For me, I know that I have been made in God’s image, but sadly I also know that I am a poor image bearer at times. I think of myself as a fruit basket… the basket represents God’s image in me, or you might see it from the perspective that the basket is the Holy Spirit within me. Over time, my basket has grown in its ability to function and to bear
fruit. Sometimes, I am a really capable basket and I bear fruit well: as in Galatians 5:22, sometimes I am doing well, I’m in balance spiritually, and I am doing a decent job of showing love, joy, peace, patience,
kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. In other words, the image of God is shining through and I am bearing His image well. Yet, there are other times when I manage to ‘upset the apple cart’, so to speak (forgive the pun). This week was one of those times:
I’ve been having a particularly difficult time with our mission work and a transition that is in process.
It is taking its toll in many ways. I’m WAY out of balance spiritually, emotionally, and physically. And
when I’m out of balance, sin finds an easy foothold. I have been stressed, tired, very emotional, physically in pain… and the
downward spiral is hard to control. So, a couple of days ago, my emotions (and sin) got the best of me and I
became venomous. Suffice to say, I was NOT a good example of the image of God. I was less-than loving, less-than
joyful or peaceful, much less-than patient or kind. I’m positive that goodness was not in me that day, nor was gentleness or
self-control. But what was still there was the image… or the fruit basket. Today, days after upsetting the balance of everything and spoiling all of the good fruits I had, I’m working to restore balance and ask for forgiveness of all who were left in the wake.
No matter what we do or how much trouble we cause or how much the balance is upset, we cannot erase the image of God.
Just as our children cannot erase the genes of their parents and won’t ever lose that inheritance, we cannot lose the image in which we were created. ‘All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the
redemption that came by Christ Jesus’ (Rms. 3:23-24). The image is still there. All have sinned. All have fallen. But the image remains.
As a coach, counselor, and caregiver, I think the message that many need to hear is that ‘it’s not over yet!’ The image
is still there! Through Christ, there is grace - grace enough to allow us to re-balance the basket and begin to
replace the lost fruit. Interesting how fruit was the image in the beginning of sin, but fruit is also the image to
show us how to move forward and be better image bearers. So grateful for grace today, as I work to upright my apple cart…
Who am I? In my USA life, I was a teacher in Texas for 15 years. I was also a professional photographer, a Southern Living / Martha Stewart wannabe, a soccer mom, and a short term mission team coordinator / intern director for missions in Mexico... you name it, I probably tried it!
In 2006, my husband Billy and I became cross-cultural workers (CCWs) with TMS Global. For five years, we served in three rural Quechua Wanca villages in the Andes of Peru. And when I say rural, I mean RURAL - like no potty! We have three incredible children... two adult boys who live in Texas, and the Sarah (14) lives with us in whatever country we are serving. I'm still teaching, still taking photos, still leading teams and mentoring, I just do it all in full-time service now! And I'm working hard at giving Southern Living and Martha Stewart a run for their money! I spent my days in Peru learning to live a Quechua lifestyle in a rustic adobe house - cooking Peruvian foods, sewing with Quechua women, raising my chickens and goats and pigs, and planting my gardens. Now I live my life in small town Spain, serving other cross-cultural workers and immigrant peoples, writing, and trying to figure out what life looks like for a Texas girl serving Christ in Southern Europe. Life in His service is AWESOME! I'm happy to share it with you here... Enjoy!