Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Glorious Ruins: Reflections on Stewardship

"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

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb."  Psalm 139:13

I heard on the radio the other day that Houston is the fattest city in the US.  Obviously, being from here and rather enjoying health and fitness this information bothered me.  I don't know how accurate this statistic is or even how they measured it (and the conspiracy theorist in me wants to call shenanigans) but the idea is a little scary.  On the other hand, I know both women and men who struggle with body image; they're too fat, not pretty, not strong enough, not good enough... I hear it whether it's out loud or implied and struggle with the same problem myself.

What I forget are what these verses say and what they ultimately mean.  God created us in His image.  I don't really know exactly what this means as God is a spirit, but I do know that it means we have value and worth beyond what we think we should look like.  Secondly, God knit us together in the wombs of our mothers.  Yet another indication that God took time to form us, that He cherishes us, that He put each of us together individually.  Yes, sin has marred this work, but it does not take away from God's initial act.  We are "glorious ruins" according to my associate pastor, Nathan Carico (he may have borrowed the statement from someone else, but I'll attribute it to him for now).  This is where we need to start, at the point where we realize that the God of the universe formed us individually in His own image.

But we need to remember something else as well.  God tasked man kind to take care of His creation, and I believe that includes our bodies.  This doesn't mean focusing all of our time and energy on how we look and what we eat, but I do think it means putting good things in our bodies and getting our butts off the couch and moving! Not for the sake of looking like some airbrushed model on the cover of a magazine, but for the sake of taking care of the physical body God gave to us.  So I challenge you, and me, to think about how we can best take care of this little part of God's creation and to remember what He created us to be in the first place.

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