We are very excited about our new video series with James Nored, "Finding Our Story in God's Story." These videos are a great way to share in discussions with other believers, with friends, with seekers, and with unbelievers. We hope you are blessed by session 2.

When God created our world, it was beautifully and wonderfully made. In fact, the ringing declaration of the Creator over his work was that it was "good" (Genesis 1:4, 10, 12, 18, 21, 25). When God created human beings as the crown of his creation, he declared the world as "very good" (Genesis 1:26-31). Despite the brokenness in our world, we can still see testimony to that beauty in the wonders we see (Psalm 19:1-4; Romans 1:20).

But why?

  • Why did God make us?
  • If God made us and our world to be "very good," what happened?
  • Where did things go wrong?
  • How did it become so broken?
  • How did humanity go so far off the rails that we see the horrible things some can do to others?
  • How can we return back to the Creator's original beauty and wonder?
  • How can I be part of the solution and not part of the brokenness?
  • How can we undo the degradation, alienation, hate, and violence that we see in our world today?
  • Are there any answers to these important questions that trouble my heart?

These are all part of the questions we want to ask and the answers we want to discover as each of us goes about Finding My Story in God's Story. Today, we are reminded why God made us. There are some important questions to ask that go with this discussion, yet we also need to remember the Creator's original intent and motivation in making our world and placing us within it:

Notice what the Creator gave to human beings, to men and women, when they were first made. These were gifts that the Creator gave as expressions of love:

  1. Both the man and the woman were created in the likeness of God and are made in the Creator's image. They were good, holy, kind, and loving. They were made with the ability to create, decide, and rule.
  2. Each person was given a mission along with meaningful work and purpose.
  3. Together, the humans were invited into loving relationship with each other and with their Creator. God walked and talked with them. They shared in community with God similar to the community God shares as Father, Son, and Spirit.
  4. The life that humans were originally given was without shame and without barriers — nothing between them and each other. There was nothing to come between their relationship with each other or with God. There was peace, beauty, harmony, and love.

Why is it important that we recognize these gifts as part of the Creator's original design, intention, and purpose for creation and for people?

How does each of these gifts remind us of the dignity and special purpose of each individual person?

There was peace, beauty, harmony, and love.
While our world is clearly broken, the dignity of each person and the Creator's purpose for each of them is still his intention. We are each distinctly and uniquely made. Despite our broken world, the Creator still proclaims that each person — each of us — is made in his image (Genesis 5:1-2; Genesis 9:6; James 3:9). In fact, the Creator is just as intimately involved personally in creating each of us as he was in creating the first people:

You [God] made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
and knit me together in my mother's womb.
Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
Your workmanship is marvelous — how well I know it.
You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.

How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.
They cannot be numbered!
I can't even count them;
they outnumber the grains of sand!
And when I wake up, you are still with me!

(Psalms 139:13-18 NLT)

So, how do you answer James' final questions in today's message:

How did things get to be the way they are today?

How does our world today compare to the world God originally created?

Which version of the world do you prefer — the original creation or our world today?

And maybe we should ask one final question as we anticipate future segments of Finding My Story in God's Story:

How do we get back to God's original intention and purpose for us and reclaim life rooted in those original gifts when the Creator made us out of the overflow of his love?

Ah! That's why our discussion continues. Hope you will join us in two weeks for session three!

For more ideas, please check out James' full discussion guide which also contains today's video. This guide includes ideas on how to share this in a discussion group or personal discussion with believers, unbelievers, and inquirers.

Until next time, let's keep asking God to help us find our story in his story!