“The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.” It can be a proud day for a parent to hear those words spoken about their children but it can also be a bit unsettling. It makes us realize that each person has a part of the DNA of their parents built into them from birth for good or bad. No matter how much teenagers talk about not wanting to be like their parents, each of us is genetically connected to our parents in a significant way. Their hair, their eyes, their build, and it goes beyond DNA. We may also talk like our parents; have the same mannerisms, quirks, or habits.
Our family tree goes beyond our biological family tree. We hear God say in Scripture, “Let us make human beings in our image, in our likeness,” (Genesis 1:26, TNIV). From creation there is a bit of the image of God imprinted into each of our DNA, on our souls, and in our lives. Do we reflect that in our lives? Would someone look at us and say, that apple did not fall far from the tree, we can see God at work in them; we can see the family resemblance?
Do we tend to focus on our own comfort (1 John 2:3-6) or obedience to God’s leading? Do we care for others (John 13:34-35), even those who are unlike us or do we spend our time judging others? Would someone hear the God DNA in our speech, speaking the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15), or are we filled with divisive, hurtful speech? When we have a disagreement with someone are we focused on building one another up (1 Corinthians 6:7-8), or are we more interested in winning at all costs?
Jesus reminds his disciples in Matthew 5:14, “We are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.” Since we are part of God’s family, since we have this familial connection, we can’t hide it. Just like we can’t hide the baldness we got from our Mom’s side, or the bright red hair all the men in our family have. So the question is simple, would someone say about us, the apple has not fallen far from the tree or would they struggle to see the family resemblance? Would they see the God DNA built into our life, or not? Are we reflecting God as a light to the world, or are we reflecting something else in our life?
1. What is one way you reflect the image of God in your life?
2. Who reflects the image of God in your life that you might encourage?
3. What is one area of your life you want to better reflect the image of God?