Genesis 1:27 proclaims that we are created in the image and likeness of God. I do not think, as far as I currently know, that there is any other religion or tradition, other than the Judeo-Christian Tradition, that has a similar doctrine. This doctrine, in a large part, gave rise to the important principles that each person has inherent dignity and rights that cannot be taken away, either by himself/herself or the state. It is a proclamation of the dignity of each person. Your Greatness dear reader.
Human beings are so valuable that when they deviated from Truth, Truth Himself died so that they may live. This is the mystery of Faith at the very center of Christianity. It is God saying that we are so valuable that we are worth dying for. We are God’s deepest desires. You are so valuable and loved that God died for you. This is the first proclamation of your greatness.
If you were to think of God as the source and embodiment of your deepest, authentic desires, then it means that that which you desire most created you and your heart will not rest until it finds its rest from that source, St. Augustine aptly taught.
We are not only proclaiming the ‘weakness’ that God has for us to the point of dying for us but also proclaiming the greatness of each human being. God did not die for worthless humans; it is His death that gives us confidence that each of us has a story to tell and that story can become part of history. To this end, Jesus says, deny yourself, pick up your cross and follow me. In other words, Jesus is and should be your highest goal, but to reach your highest goal, you need to put yourself together, have some discipline, face the suffering of life courageously and ethically and in the end, you will be raised by the Father. The Father is the fulfillment of your deepest desires and Jesus is the Way to the Father. Plus, Jesus promises to be with you till the end of times!
You are created in the image and likeness of Truth Himself. This means you can know the truth if you seek it with Faith. Allow your mind to be taught and let your greatness soar into the deep blue sky of knowledge. Let your seeking mind to find the Truth.
As you do so, your heart will be filled with joy, for you are indeed created in the image of Love Himself and He seeks to embrace you. It is in loving and being loved that true joy is to be found.
With a mind that seeks and lives by the Truth and a Loving Heart, your life is transformed. This is what conversion means. Once your mind is at the service of Truth and your heart embraces Love, you immediately feel the need to make a world a better place; to reduce, in some form, the suffering in the world. Is there any greater love than to lay down your life for your friends? Jesus, Truth, and Love Himself, asks you and me.
Friends, in each of us, in spite of and because of our histories, lies a seed of greatness. A small mustard seed. Indeed, the Kingdom of God lies in you in the form of that seed. Claim that seed and proclaim your greatness and the world will be better for it.