How to Actualize the Image of God in You
by Anthony M Coniaris
We are all made in God’s image. But to be in His likeness is only granted to those who deny their own will to follow God’s will.
In this book, Anthony Coniaris guides us Christians on our way towards theosis: towards union with God. We are described as iconographers of our lives. We are iconographers, and each and every one of us has a grand icon to construct. The image of God in us is the God-given capacity of love. Archbishop Demetrius quotes: “We should distinguish ourselves from the rest of Christ’s kingdom not simply because we bear the name ‘orthodox.’ We should be distinguished above all by the Christ-like manner of our life… by the abundance of love as well as by our conscientious devotion to truth”.
To actualise the image of God in us we need to be like icon-restorers who do not hack away at the damaged part of the icon, but instead very gently clean away all the spots and disfigurement with small, delicate brushes until the original image is restored. We need to require the same ascetic effort to restore the damaged image of God in us.
Something that prevents us in achieving our mission is Iconoclasm: where we desecrate and abolish the living icons inside us. Some examples of this are:
- When we ignore and neglect the poor, the sick, the abandoned in our midst, then we are allowing the icons to be marginalised.
- When we refuse to speak to or forgive our brother, we are defaming the image of God in us.
The book ends: Help me Lord by Your grace, to keep actualising Your image through faith, love and obedience as I go through life, so that I may have You living in me as I live in You. Amen.
Source: December 2015 – January 2016 Lychnos Edition