Striking resemblance

Have you ever been told you look like a movie star? I was compared to Katniss once in Target. It made me stand up straighter and walk around with an invisible quiver on my back until I got back to my car. Well did you know that you were created in the image of God? I have heard many people say this in different contexts over the years, and I still do not fully understand what this means. But God put something of His nature into humanity, and you have a part of that (Genesis 1, 2). Pretty cool, huh?

Part of the original design included the ability to choose: right vs wrong, obey vs disobey. Unfortunately, Adam and Eve decided to disobey, and ever since their descendants have disobedience on auto-pilot with no ability or motive to change. But we are still responsible for our decisions and actions, with the ability to recognize the difference between good and evil. Over and over as God interacted with Israel, they were presented opportunities to choose to obey His commands and be overwhelmingly blessed or disobey and be destroyed (Deuteronomy 28, 30). Even when it was a choice between idols God had already defeated and obeying the One who had delivered them from slavery (Joshua 24), Israel slid into sin. Paul showed that the rest of mankind was no better (Romans 1, 2). It looks pretty hopeless…

And that is where prevenient grace comes in!

Prevenient: preceding in time or order; antecedent. Thank you, Google.
It’s a gift. It’s shocking. It makes no sense apart from being based in love. And it is freely offered to all. Your choice is whether to accept it or not. It is something we will explore further tomorrow.
God, it is so frustrating to be wrong. I can tuck my head in to run forward, but I can’t win, I can’t control my sin, and most of the time I don’t want to. But You give grace, and Your Spirit calls me to changes from the heart outward. Thank You for not giving up on me, for calling out Your image, and making me look more like Jesus every day. Please help that to be my focus. To Your glory. Amen.

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