She gazed in the mirror then looked at me with a smirk and said, “Look at this.”
One of the first things my wife does when she gets out of bed is peeks at herself in the bathroom mirror. On most mornings, her hair portrays an “Alfalfa” pose from her tossing and turning in bed—or from not combing the hairspray out the night before. Even though she doesn’t fix her hair at the moment she glimpses it in the mirror, she doesn’t forget how it appears. She would never think of going through the day or venturing out in public without doing something about the disheveled mess perched atop her head.
James compares forgetting how we appear in the mirror with hearing but not obeying God’s Word. 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 1:23-24 NLT)
I grew up in a time and in churches when Biblical memorization was enforced with vigor. I memorized the books of the Bible and memorized many verses of Scripture from them. Bible sword drills reinforced what I had committed to memory. Yet without integration, all of this helped me very little. Only when I obeyed what I had memorized did I inherit the full advantage of knowing God’s Word.
Now when I read the Word, it’s not with memorization in mind—although I have many verses committed to memory. Listening for God to speak to my spirit while I read is my intent. And when I hear, my intentions are to obey. God’s mirror shows more than merely what’s on the outside. His Word reveals my inner thoughts and desires and causes me to compare them to God’s standard.
Are you practicing what God divulges to you in his mirror?
Prayer: God of grace, glory, and all mercy, show us in Your mirror what we need to change in our lives. Then give us the courage to obey.
Martin W. Wiles is a “wounded warrior,” freelance editor, minister, and author who understands the struggles believers face in their Christian journey. Wiles and his wife Michelle are founders of Love Lines from God (www.lovelinesfromgod.com) —a website designed to heal and encourage. Dr. Wiles has authored several books, including his most recent, Grits & Grace & God. Wiles can also be followed on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/martinwilesgreenwoodsc