People tell me that I’m exactly like my Mom. They say that I look like her, act like her, sing like her, laugh like her, stand like her, talk like her. I am her daughter in every way and for a girl who lost my mom to breast cancer at eight, that’s a priceless thing.
In the grand scheme of my life, the time that I had with her was very limited. The memory book, while full of good things, is closed, never to be added to again. I didn’t get much time to study her habits like the way she took her coffee or put her mascara on in the morning but that’s ok because apparently, I do it the same way. When I started wearing makeup, my Dad did a double take one day as he watched me apply mascara, eyes wide, mouth hanging open. It was just like her he said.
I don’t knowingly or willingly resemble her. It’s not something I chose but it’s a gift I cling to. I feel like I can know her through myself, like when I look in the mirror, I can see her. I see her in everything I do because my hands are the same shape as hers. I sense her in everything I think because my mind is patterned after hers. It’s a closeness that comes from sameness, like curtains cut from the same bolt of cloth.
I feel a keen sense of this when I’m in a room with people that knew her. I know that when they look at me, they see her and I’m happy to bring her there with me. I’m happy to be her daughter, her image bearer, her legacy. And because of this gift that I’ve been given, of carrying the image in my body and my soul of a woman that I admired, I see my strengths rather than my flaws easier. I’m not that curvy but that’s ok, neither was she. I feel things deeply, and that’s ok, so did she. I’m a rule follower, goody goody. That’s ok, so was she. And the list can go on and on.
I was patterned after her, just as she was patterned after her mother, and my grandmother after her mother, and on it goes back to Eve. Who was patterned after someone far greater.
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. “ Genesis 1:27 (NIV)
Eve was made in the image of God. Male and female He created them, each to carry a piece of His identity in their very DNA. And we are of them, so we are of Him.
You, my sweet friend, were made to bear the image of the one who made you. In His likeness, you were created.
When I look in the mirror, I see my Mom but more than that, I see my God. I see that He made me, lovingly and painstakingly, He gave me pieces of Himself desiring the closeness that comes from sameness. Desiring that the world would see Him through me.
We didn’t chose this gift but it’s a great one to be entrusted with. You see, the very image of God dwells in your being and the value that comes from that is immeasurable. When you walk into a room, you carry Him with you. In your beauty, in your grace, in your passion, in your joy, your identity is tied up in His and the knot can never be untangled.
You are His daughter in every sense of the word.
Do you know what this means? It means that every part of you, even the things that you’re not so excited about, were placed there as a replica of perfection itself. No you are not perfect but you are modeled after it and the one who made you values the pieces of your heart. Because they are pieces of His.
You are the image bearer of God, created to be a revelation of who He is and what He does to the world. Every part of you, the beautiful and the bad, can reflect His grace and strength and redemption. You bear His image in an unprecedented way just like no two children from the same parents carry exactly the same qualities. But both resemble the one’s that gave them life.
You, your person, you identity, your inside and your outside, carries the image of God. And it’s one that the world needs to see. He made you because the world needs to see Him through you. So embrace who you are, own it, use it, because the person that you’re letting the world see is not just you. It’s Him. The God that feels far to those that don’t know Him but is actually as near as the heart beating next to them.
“Now he uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere, like a sweet perfume. Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God.” 2 Corinthians 2:14-15 (NLT)
You have been given the gift of carrying Him to the broken and the hurting, the unloved and the lonely by living your life and letting the resemblance show. And just like seeing my Mom in me is balm to the souls of the ones who loved her, you and your presence on this earth is balm to those that need Jesus. Because you are His and He is yours and His work in your life from beginning to end is a revelation of love and grace.