Do you know what a mirror-hog is? I’ve had the joy (and challenge) of spending a lot of time with large groups of teens, at various church camps, mission trips, and ministry retreats. And staying in close quarters with a bunch of girls introduced me to what a mirror-hog is . . . a mirror-hog is a girl who dominates the mirror space while others try to squeeze in for a quick glance.
I have a confession to make . . . I’m not a mirror-hog, but I’m a Mirror–Dodger . . . especially now that I don’t recognize myself too well. I’ll be browsing at the mall, standing near the makeup section, and see this fairly familiar face looking back at me . . . and suddenly I realize, Oh, wow! That’s me! I’m looking at a reflection of MYSELF . . . This old woman is ME??
When you’re startled by the painful and unexpected realization that the old woman’s face before you is actually a mirror reflecting your reality—you start to avoid mirrors if possible.
I’m also a mirror dodger because I can be in such a hurry that I just don’t take the time to stop and check to see if something needs to be fixed or adjusted.
I can seriously (and I’ve been this way all my life) put my makeup on early in the morning, quickly fix my hair, rush out the door, and not look in the mirror again until I’m getting ready for bed. I don’t recommend that approach. If you go that route, be sure you have friends around who’ll be good enough to let you know if you have a smudge of mascara or bit of mustard left on your face!
But what if I’m a mirror-dodger because I don’t want my imperfections pointed out to me?
That has definitely been the case at times—not necessarily in a physical mirror, but a spiritual one.
Today, I’m challenging us to become “mirror-hogs” rather than “mirror-dodgers.” I want to encourage you to look closely in the mirror. But the mirror I’m suggesting is God’s Word:
[box]But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was.
But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does. (James 1:22–25)[/box]
The “perfect law,” the “law of liberty” is able to give me an accurate reflection of myself. I may be buzzing through life feeling pretty good about myself, but then I look closely into the mirror of the Word, and it clarifies not only my outward condition, but it reaches all the way down to my heart and reveals what is there:
[box]For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)[/box]
As a young bride, it was the mirror of the Word that showed me I needed to take my thoughts captive before they led me to destruction. As a mother grieving my miscarriage, it was the mirror of the Word that showed me how messed up my theology was. As a woman striving to live for God’s glory, it is the mirror of the Word that is daily revealing to me areas where I’m lacking in faith.
[box]Your testimonies are wonderful . . . The unfolding of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple . . . Establish my footsteps in Your word, and do not let any iniquity have dominion over me. (Psalm 119:129–133)[/box]
What is the mirror of God’s word showing you today? Are there any smudges that need correcting? Anything out of place? Any heart issues that need adjusting?