In general, I am not a fan of mirrors. They are too honest. Their very nature requires them to reflect back exactly what they see. They cast aside the comfortable, self-created delusions I prefer about the way I look and act.
The mirrors of God, when gazed upon with desire and an openness of heart, will aid us as we change into His likeness from one degree of glory to another. 2 Cor. 3:18
When I pay attention, I see Him working.
I see Him laying mirrors to my left, to my right, and in the center of my path.
His mirrors are the voices of my beloved sisters and brothers. They abound in the rich and holy words of Scripture. They shine in the resonating words of Sunday morning sermons and evening devotions. Sometimes there are smaller, more delicate reflecting pools of pure, trusting words from innocent children.
Woven into the regular beat of distracted, over-laden work and home days, they are often displayed when I am least ready, least interested, and feel least able to look upon them. Sometimes the mirrors are from unexpected sources. Sometimes the reflections zoom, jagged-like, from the mouths of my own children or spouse.
And the question is, am I paying attention and brave enough to look into those mirrors with an open heart?
Will I take God’s grace seriously enough, with enough trust, and allow Him to reflect exactly what I need to see? Will I accept it as truth and not turn my face from certain mirrors and look for others that are more flattering?
More importantly, will I remember that the mirrors only begin the work? They only help me identify the unkempt life-places, the blemishes and ugly smudges that mask His glory. Will I be a ‘doer’ and use the mirrors to guide the clean up, and not merely a ‘hearer’ who tucks the mirror in a drawer or shrouds it for a later time that never comes?
Today I begin, keeping my eyes lifted and more wide open. I will struggle not to avert my eyes. My heart is pounding, because I am uncomfortable, and more than a little afraid of what I’ll see. I am made braver by those who have gone before me and taken hard looks in God’s mirrors–allowing Him to accomplish the work He intended. Mixed in with the sweaty palms that come before what is unexpected, I also have the joy pool welling full– it grows with the assurance that
in all things
He works with me,
and beside me
in preparation for eternal blessing.
Have mercy on me, O God, according to thy steadfast love; …wash me thoroughly! Psalm 51
For God is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure. Phil. 2:13