Have you ever thought about sanctification? What all does it mean to be sanctified? What does it mean to be holy? I would like to put forward a suggestion based on the idea that we are made in the image of God. I believe this integral part of our design shows us how we are to be in relationship to him.
I do not believe the image of God is physical. God is not material in his essential being. I do believe though that many of his attributes are put in us though to a far less degree. We have the attributes of power, knowledge, rationality, relationality, wisdom, and sexuality for instance. We are male and female in his image so masculinity and femininity would reside in God.
In saying that last part, I do believe there are some attributes more reflected in the males and some more in the females. I believe the males are the leaders and they reflect more attributes of strength and leading. Females though reflect the beauty of God and are the jewel of his creation.
What makes a female so beautiful? It’s life. All that she is shows her to be a picture of life. She is vibrant and shining. She has in her what is needed to develop a life and to sustain it. Of course though, that new life I think needs a father and it definitely needs a father to get started.
We must go on though to this idea of sanctification. I believe that God does not turn us into himself. This is not a Hindu Nirvana concept where you get absorbed into God and cease to exist. This isn’t the Buddhist Sunyata idea where your goal is to reach the void where you cease to exist altogether. In the end, you are to reflect God.
Yet in reflecting God, you will still be you. Your essential you will not cease to exist. Instead, in reflecting God, you will be more you than ever before. You will be you as you were meant to be. What you are is to be whole and good. Anything that does not reflect the image of God does not fit.
Thus, I look at my life and I see pieces that don’t fit. I see parts of me that are being cut away. I find them painful. I find there is much that I would prefer to keep with me. I find I have raised up in me issues I don’t understand and I ponder that maybe these are coming forth so God can deal with them and I can be allowed to live the life he meant for me to live.
Everything must go. I must reflect him as he is. In the end, I will be the one that he looks at and he sees himself reflected. In the end, you will be the same way if you willingly submit to him. It is painful indeed, but he means your good in the long run. No one likes sitting in the dentist chair, but in the end when we have a beautiful smile, we are indeed grateful.
So it is with this. Perchance you are complaining about it, but it might be the only way. The only way you can really recognize his sanctification in your life is for you to go through it. It will then be that you are more willing to trust him in the long-term. It is by his grace that you will be set free. It won’t be painful, but it will be beneficial.
The weaver is weaving his tapestry and the needles will hurt at times. The silversmith is purifying you in the fire that will burn, but you will reflect his image. The potter is shaping and molding you, but you will have rough handling. Slowly, you are being turned into a work of art reflecting the great artist.
<> Indeed, it will be worthwhile.