One great symbol that helps explain this is a mirror. So often we hear that we are empty vessels for God to fill, but a better image is that we are broken mirrors that God needs to fix so we can reflect him to others.
Being human is an endless cycle:
First, God reveals himself to us (through the Bible)
Second, we learn about him and interpret the Bible to discover what it means to follow him
Third, as an act of worship, we follow him when we are in a relationship with him.
This doesn't seem like a cycle, but it is! When we follow God, we reflect him to others, allowing them to learn about God because he reveals himself through us. All too often, we don't think about that last step, but it's crucial!
Here are some questions to follow up with your teen:
- How has the Western view changed when it comes to the topic of what it means to be human, what the point of life is, and how we can become better people?
- How do you identify yourself both as an individual and in a community?
- What are some of the ways we are created in God's image?
- What does it mean to be God's image-bearers?
- What's the danger of reflecting God poorly (especially when we don't pursue a relationship with him and are content with simply knowing what we should do)?
- How is our reflection of God also a reflection of the strength of our relationship with him?
- Look up Galatians 5:22-23. What fruits are you "ripe" at? Which ones are you "rotten" at? How can you ask God to repair your mirror so that you improve in those areas?