I love to watch people. I love to watch people working out at the gym. Sometimes it’s to see what they are doing and if I need to add it to my routine. Sometimes it’s just to watch them for entertainment sake. People are funny. We are an interesting mix of humanity. It takes all kinds for the world to go around! I don’t watch people to judge them; at least I try not to judge. There is one fellow at the gym though that seems to be enamored with himself. He is always looking at his reflection in the mirror. Whether he is actually lifting weights or just walking by. His eye is always on the mirror – not at others – at himself. When I first noticed him a while back, I would chuckle – inwardly of course. However, I began to hear the Holy Spirit telling me this is how I should approach God’s word.
The Word is supposed to be a mirror. We are to study it intently, just as this fellow does at the gym. The mirror does us no good if we look at it and walk away unchanged. We normally check our appearance to make sure we are presentable to the world. The Word should make us presentable for the world to see Jesus in us. We are to look at it so intently that we will not walk away from it unchanged. The Word gives us a reflection of how we measure up to the standard God set through Jesus. Are we close to His reflection? Can others see Jesus in us? When we go to the Bible, the Bible will help us see where we stand. When we need to, the Holy Spirit will give us an indication if we need to repent in order to make us right before God. We are an imperfect people. We all fall short of God’s glory.
Repentance has been the word of late for me. I have wondered if there is anything that is keeping me from the full fellowship of God. I have wondered if there is anything that I need to repent from. I thought I had done all the repenting I needed to do. But as I look intently at the Word, I realized it’s the little things that keep occurring that I need to repent of. It’s my mouth – saying things I should have checked through the Holy Spirit before speaking. It’s the thoughts that have run through my mind. I don’t necessarily say much, but I do think many things that need to be confessed. There are also things that happen in my daily activities that need to be checked. Am I being a good steward with the things God has given me? How about the people in my life; am I helping anyone today? God puts people in our lives that are difficult to love. God uses those people to help us become more like Jesus. I don’t like those lessons. I just like easy things to take care of; but that is not God’s way. He challenges the comfort zone!
As I look at God’s word, I am reminded that I am far from where I need to be. However, I am so much further along than where I was. It’s just a process that is refined and lived out daily. I may not be looking at the physical reflection in the mirror as intently as the fellow at the gym, but I need to be looking deeply at my spiritual reflection. After all, I want the full fellowship of the Holy Spirit. I want the reflection to be more like Jesus. I want to draw others to Him. Nothing else really matters. Eternity is the only lens in which to view all things. We are an interesting bunch for sure. But God loves each and every one of us. Our character matters to Him. And He is in the process of making us perfect even though it doesn’t look like it right now. But eternity is right around the corner!
But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. James 1:22-24 (NLT)