A Family Resemblance

28 Sep

Now I’ve gone and pinned myself into a corner. I promised that this week you would be getting a really good post. The pressure feels very high, and I’m scared you’ll be disappointed. So, if you walk away feeling disappointed, please don’t tell me. Just carry on with your day as if nothing happened.

This past weekend I was in Buffalo visiting some family members and doing some shopping. While I was walking around the mall, I couldn’t help but feel like I was seeing doubles. Sometimes even triples. All around me were groups of teenagers…all of whom looked exactly the same! They were all wearing Hollister type track pants…Abercrombie sweatshirts…big brown Uggs…and had their hair pulled up in a “last minute” bun. Exact replicas.

The fashionable trend of the era may change, but the fact that, with time, friends begin to act and even dress like each other is nothing new. I know I was exactly the same way. The more I spent time with my friends, the more I became like them, talked like them, and yes, even dressed and wore my hair like them.

It even happens with married couples. Now, I have a theory. There’s no scientific knowledge to back this up, so if you google it, you won’t find anything. But I personally believe that as the years pass, a married couple begins to increasingly resemble each other…as in, they start to look like brother and sister! The next time you’re out, see it for yourself. Take a look at the married couples in the mall, sitting with each other in restaurants, walking down the street together. The older they are and the longer they’ve been married…the more they look like they are related.

Beyond the physical resemblance, have you ever noticed how similar husbands and wives become with time? They begin to finish each other’s sentences, tell the same stories, even fall into the same routine that becomes wholly theirs. I see it with my parents in such a clear way. It’s a common occurrence for my mother to tell me a story, only to find that my father is repeating the same one to me only a few hours later. Though I’ve only been married for four years, I can already see it happening with Shady. Lately some of the jokes he’s been telling have had a very “Dina” flavour about them. I look at him with those “I’m turning you into me” smile. But I know it works both ways…so many of his personality traits are rubbing off on me as well!

It’s inevitable I think…the more time we spend with someone, the more we will be molded into their image, and them into ours. We become like the company that we keep.

The Bible teaches us that when man and women were first created, we were made to bear HIS image. We were made to resemble God and be like Him. But sin entered the world, and we began to think and act in ways that are completely contrary to the image and character of God. That’s one of the reasons why I love the Holy Spirit! Because it is the Holy Spirit who convicts us of this sin, points us to the cross, and reconciles us to God. And then something amazing happens…the Holy Spirit begins the incredible work of restoring us to the image of Christ. We begin to bear a strong resemblance to the nature and character of Jesus Christ…we begin to resemble Him. More and more. Every day.

How does this happen? A little bit like the teenage girls who slowly become twins as they spend time together…a little like the husband and wife who grow in their resemblance to each other…so too with us, as we spend time with the Lord, in His Word, fellowshipping with Him throughout the day, speaking with Him in prayer…we too grow in our likeness of Him. But it’s not just that his character will “rub off” on us…no there is a greater power at work in us. The Holy Spirit, who dwells within the believer, will do the work, changing us, molding us day by day, into the image of Christ. And as He does this, we find the things He hates, we begin to hate. And the things He loves, we begin to love. And the character of Christ, it shines through ours.

We begin to bear a family resemblance to Christ, such that people know we belong to Him. And they learn more about Him by observing our characters.

That is our hope, and that is our aim. To be ever, increasingly more like Christ.

2 Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

 

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3 Responses to “A Family Resemblance”

  1. majay13 September 28, 2012 at 9:50 AM #

    No disappointment here. Great post D. Makes me think, when we don’t look like Christ, who is it or what is it that we’re spending time with that’s effecting us and shaping us, because we’re never neutral.. We’re always being moulded by something or someone.. Thanks for your thoughts. As always very insightful!

  2. aban September 29, 2012 at 4:50 PM #

    i love that verse. it is one of my favourites…what an exciting promise!

  3. Ee October 2, 2012 at 6:30 PM #

    More than wonderful Dina, no disappointment whatsoever, actually very encouraging and inspiring.

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