God’s Masterpiece: God’s Little “I am’s”

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well on this first Sunday and week of Fall! Yes, it is officially Fall! Summer 2023 has come to an end. It’s time to get those sweatshirts out, your favorite mugs for hot chocolate out of the box, and begin watching the leaves change color before they fall on the ground and get raked into ginormous piles for you to jump in. Now that Fall has arrived, I am eager to enjoy its festivities, scents, tastes, and vibrant transformations. Thinking of Fall, I do have to ask, “Do you say Fall or Autumn?”

Today we continue our look at God’s Masterpiece by asking the question “Who are you?” In the Book of Exodus, we read the story of God meeting Moses at the burning bush. There, God said to him, “I am the God your father, the God of Abraham, the God of your ancestors, and I want you to go to Pharaoh and direct him to release my people from slavery.”

But Moses kept asking him, “Who are you?” “If I come to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” God said to Moses, “I am who I am—thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘I AM has sent me to you’” (Exodus 3:13-14)

God wanted to be known simply as the great “I AM.” When Moses then asked, well, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh?” God replied, “I will be with you.” That is, we, who are all made in the image of God, are little “I am’s”, and thus we are defined. We are who God has created us to be. We are who God has imagined. We are the living presence of Jesus on this earth. As St. Teresa has noted,

Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world,
Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,
Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.
Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,
Yours are the eyes, you are his body.
Christ has no body now but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
compassion on this world.
Christ has no body now on earth but yours.

Many of the words we use to describe ourselves are just plain fact: some people say that are a man and others will say they are a woman. All of you could say “I am a child”. But we also describe ourselves in other ways. We might say, “I am lazy”, “I am shy”, “I am no smart”, or “I am clumsy”. Those are very negative declarations aren’t they? Those types of statements tend to shape what we are or who we become. Unfortunately, we don’t always label ourselves that way. We may hear others call us that so many times, that we tend to believe it. What if you don’t want to become any of those, what can you do? We should all strive to be proactive, present, smart to our own understanding, and kind and compassionate because Jesus needs us to help him do his work on earth as it is in heaven.

Here’s a simple solution: simply make new, positive declarations. By re-naming ourselves, we enlarge the space for God to help us to become who we say we are: “I am a child of God”. “I am a kind person”. “I am a generous person. And despite everything, I am filled with joy, hope, peace and love.” Once you believe that, it will be easier to live that way. We are the body of Christ–a living presence of his love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, faithfulness, and gentleness (Galatians 5:22-23). Those are the things that we want to be. We want to be the Fruit of the Spirit here on earth. We are what God needs us to be so that Jesus lives in us and through us as the Holy Spirit goes on before us preparing the way in the wilderness.

Of course, though, we may fail at times. But, here is another declaration: “I am NOT a quitter”. When I fall down, I don’t stay there. I get right back up, and keep trying. We are called to walk in the ways of the one who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13). You can be whatever you have the courage to take a stand for. You are a creation: molded by God’s hands, transformed by the love of Christ, and refined by the works of the Holy Spirit. So when God asks you, “Who are you?”, what are you going to say? Remember, you are part of “I am.” So, who are you? And what do you want to be?

Let us Pray: Dear Lord, we know that you are the Great “I AM”. Help us to remember that we are little “I am’s” and to make positive declarations on our lives. Amen.

Your Friend, Holy Spirit!

Children’s Message borrowed from “Sermon4Kids”: https://sermons4kids.com/great_i_am_karin_grant.htm


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