What’s Your Mirror Like?
1Cor. 13:12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known.
Paul understood the limitations of our spiritual journey while here in the flesh. Our desire is to look upon the Image of God face to face — and nose to nose! Unfortunately, as Moses learned, to see God face to face meant that you would die. Therefore we are limited while in the flesh and can only see Jesus in a mirror, dimly. The mirrors in the time of Paul were made of polished metal, probably bronze. Therefore they were not as clear as our mirrors that we have these days. The image is not distorted, but the image is somewhat dim. This is the way in which we are able to see our Lord now — and therefore we can only known “in part.” But there will be a day when we will see him face to face and our knowledge of him will be total and complete.
I’d like us to consider another direction or perspective on this scripture for a few moments. The theme, if you want to call it that, of this devotional blog is “Reflecting the Image.” Over and over again in the word we see this concept of reflecting the Image (and remember THE Image is Jesus Christ) — and so I’m wondering if we might actually be seeing something about reflecting the Image in this word from Paul, and not just about seeing the Image. Let’s step back a moment.
Paul is calling the people of Corinth into a deeper walk and relationship with Jesus Christ. The people in the church have become hung up on spiritual gifts and fighting over who is better, more powerful, or more significant. This is a HUGE problem because when the world looks upon the church they are not supposed to see a group of individuals trying to show off their own spiritual gifts, they are supposed to see Jesus.
How does the world see Jesus in the midst of church folk? By those people being a reflection of Jesus Christ in the world. We are called to reflect the Image. Could it be that Paul is actually referring to the spiritual state of the Corinthians in this verse — the fact that he himself and the world around them were only seeing a dim reflection of the Image because they themselves were not the best reflection of him?! Could it be that they themselves were the dim mirrors?!
Until Jesus comes again, the only reflection of Jesus that the world will see is the one in you and me. If the world is only seeing a very dim reflection of Jesus, it’s not his fault, it’s yours and mine.
When people say that there doesn’t seem to be much activity of the Holy Spirit in our world or in our churches these days, it means that there isn’t much reflection of Jesus happening in our midst. Paul knew that it would take time in prayer and in seeking the face of God for our reflection to become more and more clear. Our intimate knowledge of Jesus Christ would grow as we drew closer and closer to him. And the closer we are to him the more clear the reflection of Jesus will be in our lives. And the clearer the reflection of Jesus in you and in me, the more the world will be blessed by the reflection of Jesus in their midst.
Are you blaming your dim relationship with Jesus Christ on the current state of your mirror? Maybe it’s time to ask God to help you clean up your mirror and then draw up closer and closer to Jesus so that you can reflect him.
What’s your mirror like?
Lord, may my mirror be clean and shiny, reflecting you to the world. Amen.