In his book The Steward Leader, Scott Rodin emphasizes that God through Christ has reconciled us back into a relationship with Himself. The starting point is receiving the gift of God’s lovingkindness—being restored to an intimate relationship with our God. From this restored relationship with God, we are given the gifts of a right relationship with ourselves, a right relationship with others, and a right relationship with creation.
Because of the estrangement that has existed in men and women’s relationship with God, “the simple command to love our neighbor as we love ourselves has become an impossible task, in part because we have lost our ability to love ourselves as God loves us, and in part because we have lost the intimacy with the God who is the author of that very love. A loss of relationship with God brings about a distorted self-image, which in turn leads to abusive relationships that serve a self that is still desperately searching for its source of meaning and purpose.” 1
God created mankind in His image, with the capacity for faithful and loving relationships. The path to a restored self-image is in receiving the gift of a restored relationship with our Heavenly Father. This is the beginning point, and it is also the place where we continue to abide. It is here that we are able to lay aside the brokenness of a self-image that comes from trying to find meaning apart from His love and grace.
“By redeeming our relationship with God, Jesus offers us back our self-understanding. We can once again know who we are because we know whose we are. We can put aside the distortions that sin would inject into our self-awareness, and we can see ourselves—body, mind, and spirit—as belonging to the God who created us for fellowship and redeemed us in his Son”.2
It is good to dwell on the fact that you belong to God, that He has done everything necessary to redeem you and restore you to Himself. Our identity is wrapped up in our relationship with Him—the Heavenly Father who in His faithful love will go to all extremes to gather us to Himself (John 3:16; Luke 15:4; 19:10; Rom. 5:10; 2 Cor. 5:19).
1. Rodin, R. Scott. The Steward Leader: Transforming People, Organizations and Communities (InterVarsity Press: Kindle Edition), 41-42.
2. Ibid. 46.