Our life experiences do not have to dictate our successes or failures in this life. They are truly opportunities for us to display our true beliefs. It is our responses to these experiences that will let people know what we really believe. Our actions will determine our future of failures or successes. How we respond to the things we go through and experience in life are the very occasions that will impact our families and communities and eternity. There is a way that seems right, in the sight of mankind, because it is what everyone does, but it leads to death and destruction. There is another way that appears to be foolish in the eyes of the world because it is God’s way and leads to the truth and everlasting life.
Proverb 14:12 There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death. NKJV
In the beginning God gave us a purpose and a process. Our purpose is to look like Him because we were created in His image. The process is living this life in a way that may be fruitful and multiply His image to fill the whole earth with His reflection. This is done by having dominion over the things of the earth.
Genesis 1: 27- 28A So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion… NKJV
With the fall, mankind lost sight of his purpose and lost their created identity to be the image of God on the earth. Mankind was transformed into the likeness of the one whom they obeyed, Satan, and darkness prevailed. Instead of mankind subduing his enemy and having dominion over the challenges, they listened to the father of lies and became like him. Yet, God did not lose sight of the purpose and plan He had before the world began, which is to be in fellowship with us and for us to be in the family of God.
Though every society and people group tries to dehumanize and humiliate different segments of people groups, but their value are beyond any natural price. Only the life of God Himself could purchase and redeem us. Many people go to great lengths to create hate, self-hate and disunity for the purpose of exalting themselves even at the expense of others. Every life is valuable to God and is worth the high cost of Jesus’ blood.
The highest commandment is to love God and the second is to love those who were created in His image. Some people see God’s commandment, to love and to forgive others, as a light matter. Many think because of God’s love, He would not require them to go through such humiliation of lowering themselves to forgive others. Many have endured some horrendous wrongs and injustices and they believe a loving God would not require them to forgive. The refusal to forgive others and being concern for one’s own rights are results of a fallen nature and not the nature of God. However, it is the very love of God and His Mercy towards us that requires us to die to pride and self-centeredness and forgive others.
1 Corinthians 1: 21 b, 27 …the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.
But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; NKJV
This world values knowledge and intellect, but this too, is part of this fallen world system. Many refuse to acknowledge the truth and wisdom of God. Just as in the beginning, mankind went after the knowledge of good and evil rather than believe the truth of God’s word. Some people today would rather give up the truth of God’s word so they may appear to be intellectual and knowledgeable in the world’s eyes.
The things this world calls foolish God will use to disgrace and dishonor the mighty things of this world’s systems. When we allow knowledge and intellect to rise above the truth of God’s word and His love, it will eventually lead to destruction. It takes a mind schooled and trained in the wisdom of God to understand that we must die to our self-interests. It is when we humble ourselves to the love of God, we will be exalted in due season.
Jesus displayed a life of humility and service to others. He is our Sovereign King, Lord and Teacher. He shows us how we are to live this God given life on earth. Though Jesus was equal with God, He did not think He was robbed when He took on the body of a man and became a servant to all mankind. Jesus is God and yet He humbled Himself to wash the feet of a traitor, who was about to have Him killed. Jesus was reflecting the image of God on the earth by His acts of love and dying to Self-interest so others may live.
John 14:7-9 If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.” Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? NKJV
Life experiences will always give us opportunities to impact eternity, just as Jesus did and in similar ways. Everyone that follows Christ should reflect and speak the love of God, to the wicked and the just. So people who see us will see the love of the Father in and through our lives, because we live like Christ. The things we experience in life are great and wonderful opportunities for us to display God’s kingdom life, love and the light of God in this dark world.