So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27

Imago Dei. Literally, “In His image.” God created each of us uniquely in His image.  Not only did He create us, He knew who we were, He set us apart and gave each of us a purpose.  And yet, from the moment we’re born, the World begins to label us according to its definitions, its agenda, its intentions for its goals.  Whether we allow those labels to shape us, to limit us, to bend us into what the World wants us to be often determines our path both in the World and through life, and influences us to apply labels to others.

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.  Jeremiah 1:5

nolabelsImago Dei (ID) is about finding your true identity, the you God knew before He placed you in your mother’s womb, the you that you were meant to be.  The real you in all your wonderfully unique self created in His image. It’s about tearing away the labels placed on you by society and the World. It’s about seeking and finding your path, your future, your calling, your passion.

But ID is also about learning to remove the labels society, the World and, yes, even you put on others and to see them for who they were created to be.  It’s about connecting. It’s about growing. It’s about understanding. It’s about life. It’s about you. No matter who you or they are. No matter where you or they been. No matter what labels you or they have been given.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.  Matthew 22:37-40

identitydrivesactionsAs we learn to remove the labels from ourselves and others, we will learn to use the teachings of Christ to navigate, find peace and purpose in, and pursue our callings as we make our way through this earthly world. We’ll use what we learn to take positive, productive action for others and for ourselves. So, if you’re looking for hands-on, involved, community serving faith, we encourage you to come, learn more about us, about ID, and about yourself. 

ID is a new program of the MVUMC Youth & Young Adult Ministries, and is open to anyone (regardless of marital status, church affiliation, gender, lifestyle, favorite sports teams, etc) out of high school and between the ages of 18-34.

ID will meet Sundays from 5-7 p.m. at Mountain View UMC*, 3200 Maryville Pike, Knoxville, TN beginning Sunday, January 8, 2017. Sign up. Bring friends. There may be donuts, pizza and/or coffee involved!!

*Other South Knoxville locations may be chosen occasionally dependent on activities and agreement of ID participants.