There Are No Ordinary People, Only Image Bearers

paper people having a party

Super Hero Boy Ready to FlyNext Sunday morning, look around you.  Really look. There are no ordinary people in that room with you, only image bearers.

We are made in God’s image. As we have discussed before, I think this means that we are the ones through whom God manifests his glorious presence in the world. We are like little idols, physical entities by which God makes himself present throughout his creation. God is present in other ways too, of course, but we are his image bearers. And that means there nothing mere, simple, or ordinary about being human.

In one of my favorite passages from C. S. Lewis’ The Weight of Glory, Lewis explains that this means we need to have an amazingly high view of the people around us, along with a correspondingly high view of the responsibility that exists between us:

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Flotsam and jetsam (5/19)

bacon

bacon

Good Reads

  • People Who Eat People: Hannibal and TV’s New Darkness:  From Dexter and The Walking Dead to True Detective and Hannibal, our tastes for television are skewing darker; we’re losing ourselves not just in anti-heroes, but in horror itself. What are we really escaping into, though? (Hazlitt)
  • Theology Is Poetry:  It is the shading in a world of lines, the winch that straining, pulls words from the page and into the 3-dimensional. Despite being the study of an objective Truth, it is the thing that makes a complex faith applicable to a complex life. (Miriam Dale)
  • The Literature of the Standing Desk:  It’s taller, sleeker, and less hospitable than its slouchier cousin. In the way that it mimics a lectern, a podium, or a drafting table, it reminds the writer that this activity requires blood, enzymes, and exertion. Here is your novel, spread out like a map or a campaign speech. Here are your poems, arranged like blueprints. Pace, stamp your feet, fold your arms, but stay upright. Stand there like it’s the prow of a ship. (The Millions)

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Flotsam and jetsam (5/16)

kissing sister

kissing sister

Good Reads

  • Liberals’ Dark Ages:  How ironic that the persecutors this time around are the so-called intellectuals. They claim to be liberal while behaving as anything but. The touchstone of liberalism is tolerance of differing ideas. Yet this mob exists to enforce conformity of thought and to delegitimize any dissent from its sanctioned worldview. Intolerance is its calling card. (Kirsten Powers)
  • Pentecostalization and Pluralization: The New Latino Religious Landscape:  In short, pluralization and Pentecostalization are the two great takeaways from the new Pew survey of the Latino religious landscape. I expect that both trends will continue apace in the near future as the competitive marketplace of faith continues to diversify throughout the Americas. (HuffPo)
  • Read or Get Out of the Ministry:  John Wesley told young ministers to “read or get out of the ministry.” Those are strong words, but Wesley believed reading was essential for development. Of Wesley, A.W. Tozer wrote, “He read science and history with a book propped against his saddle pommel as he rode from one engagement to another.” (Eric Geiger)

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Grading Came Alive, And I Died (from the archives)

Huge stack of papers

Huge stack of papersI was once alive apart from teaching, but when the end of the semester came, grading came alive and I died.

The very job that promised life proved to be death to me.

For grading, seizing an opportunity through the teaching, deceived me and through it killed me.

So the teaching is holy, and the classroom is holy and righteous and good.

Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was grading, producing death in me through what is good, in order that grading might be shown to be sin, and through the classroom might become sinful beyond measure.

For we know that the teaching is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under grading.

Romans 7:9-14  VLT (very loose translation)

Romans 7 never made so much sense.

[At the end of each semester, professors everywhere take a collective deep breath…and then let it out in the form of one long complaint. I think we’re mostly annoyed at ourselves for once again assigning more work than we actually want to grade. Anyway, this is a post I wrote a couple of years back, but it fit my mood this morning as I’m finally reaching the end of this semester’s grading. Enjoy.]