Handling Conflict As A Christian

On theology, neurology, and petting lions this holiday season.

Emily Rose
10 min readDec 7, 2022


The human brain is a fascinating and terrifying place.

This is your brain, sans flesh-onesie. (Medizzy)

This is the thing that governs every solitary sensation we have while bound in these clay vessels, and there’s clearly a reason it’s kept wrapped up under so many layers of blood, fibers of varied hardness, and other assorted gore. Of all the inner systems that make the human machine function, and all the horror they individually inspire in us, the nervous system is the most frightening in both appearance and sheer mystery.

Seriously. Who the heck even comes up with crap like this?

Well… God, apparently. If Genesis 1: 26–27 is to be believed, God has created humankind in His own image — His only creation to be given such an honor. Pete Enns, a contributor for BioLogos.org, talks more deeply about this phenomenon, common conclusions we draw from it, and what it truly means in a theological context.

“The phrase “image of God” is not about what makes us human. It is about humanity’s unique role in being God’s kingly representatives in creation. Once we understand what image of God means in Genesis, we will be in a better position to see how this idea is worked out elsewhere in the Bible.”

So, God has made us — alien copilot and all — for a very specific and penultimately glorious purpose. We are filled not only with God’s breath, but with His intention to rule this reality He has made for us.

Whether or not we carry that intention out well is often a different matter, thanks to the constraints of that same reality. We live in a fallen world, and most major religions throughout time and space say that mankind only has himself — or rather herself — to blame for that. Whether by way of forbidden fruit or boxes containing all the wretched things in the world, humanity has been struggling to make sense of the world’s ups and downs for as long as we’ve been here.

And the brains we’ve been given for our heavenly task — the only one we know of that is capable of complex construction, speech, or thought — gets distracted just trying to keep itself alive.