After God showcases his transcendent power by speaking one hundred billion galaxies into existence, he says that the crown of his creation – the most majestic display of beauty and wisdom and power – is you.
So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.
And God bless them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the Earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the Earth.” (Genesis 1:27-28)
You and I reflect God. When we look at people, or when they look at us, we see a reflection of the God of Genesis 1. We are created in his image. And because of that, our mission is to rule over God’s Earth and to be fruitful and fill it.
Have lots of sex and rule the world. If that’s not grace, I don’t know what is.
But what does the “image of God” mean? In what way do we reflect God? Above all, the image of God means that we have an exalted status above everything else in creation. We bear God’s image not just by what we do – think, feel, imagine, relate – but simply by who we are. A quadriplegic two-year-old with Down syndrome possesses the image of God and therefore has infinite worth and value in the eyes of God, not because of what she does, but because of whom she reflects. Every human, every single one, bears the glorious image of the transcendent Creator.
Rich, poor, successful, homeless, healthy, disabled, black, white, brown, young, old, famous, abused, abusive, pervert, or priest – whoever you are and whatever you have or have not accomplished – if you are human, then you are cherished and prized and honored and enjoyed as the pinnacle of creation by a Creator who bleeds Charis. If you’re reading, listening to, or following the braille dots of this book, you are infinitely more majestic and beautiful than the glimmering peaks of Mount Everest, the soothing turquoise waters of the Caribbean, the commanding cliffs of Yosemite, or the well-titled Grand Canyon, which God carved out of Arizona.
God wants you to take pleasure in his Earth, enjoy the people in your life, and rule over his creation. Ours is a giving God and he longs for us to receive his Charis with gratitude and delight.
And there’s more.