And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:18 (NIV)
If you saw Jesus in the streets today, would you recognize him? Would you identify him by his appearance – his long wavy hair, beard and white robes – or perhaps through the crowd of followers – with His twelve disciples in tow? We live in a different time from Jesus and our imagination runs wild with what He might look like today and how He might act.
Yet we read in scripture that our Lord showed up in the most unexpected of ways to His people. To a crowd expecting to usher in a warrior king on a chariot, He chose to ride into Jerusalem on a borrowed donkey. At a dinner, knowing his hour would soon come, out of great love, He suddenly stooped down to wash the feet of his disciples, an act typically reserved for a servant. Today, this trend continues. Jesus chooses the most unlikely of candidates – His people – despite their sin and brokenness – to reflect His image and character unto others. Matthew 5.16 reminds, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Several years ago, I took a personal retreat to seek the Lord in a decision and booked myself at an Airbnb. While I had my own plans to spend in retreat, little did I know that God was about to share with me a lesson on the power of Christian charity. Unknown to me, my elderly Airbnb hosts were fellow believers and though we were from different cultures and a good generation (or two!) apart, we were able to hit it off fairly quickly. Their home was just what I needed for the 2 days: a cabin nestled in the Californian redwoods, there were fresh eggs from the chickens in their yard which became my breakfast, and the warm conversations shared with my hosts served as a gentle rudder as I sought the Lord during that time. The warmth of God was evident through my hosts and though the stay was brief, they left an undeniable mark on me. “Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” Hebrews 13.1
God wants to use you today to bear His image to those who yet know Him or are far from Him today. It could be in the form of showing hospitality to that person you pass by so often, or as simple as offering a kind word to a friend in need. Even if you feel utterly unprepared, He can and wants to use you still – you need not come prepared but just come available to God. You are already made in His image – would you allow His face to shine through yours today and draw others to the glorious light?
Jesus has seized you to be an image bearer of Jesus!
This is the first in the “Seized to Be An Image Bearer of Jesus” series of blog posts and is a special submission from Bertram Lim, a PEER Servants volunteer from Singapore.