Mirror Mirror on the wall.
22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like.
Why do we hear the word but not do it? You probably have your own idea of why. Here’s mine.
My theory is that it is because we’re too busy hearing it for others to apply it to ourselves. Basically, we are thinking that it does not apply to us.
When we hear a word or listen to a message it should cause us to self-reflect, but instead of people to focus on their own reflections, they hold the mirror up to face someone else.
Have you ever seen a post on Instagram or listened to a message berating someone’s negative actions or lifestyle and you immediately think to yourself “if only Foster and his imaginary friends were here to hear this or see this because wow they really need this word”?
I have. What God made me realize after many times of me deflecting a message to someone else was that instead of worrying about what Josie and the Pussycats are listening to or doing, worry about yourself first. You’re here listening to this message for a reason, not them. Take the message and apply it to your own life. In due time, I (God) will take care of Josie and her friends.
When you hear a message, or when you see a post talking about cutting off dead weight or how people need to be better friends and quit being so difficult, don’t let your mind wander to Ed, Edd, and Eddy and how this message is so for them. Instead, think about the message and how it applies to your own life. Focus the mirror on yourself. Think about your own friendships and your own relationships. After hearing the message or reading the post, ask yourself, “how can I be a better person/friend”? because sometimes you’re the “people”. You’re the dead weight- or whatever else it is that you keep deflecting unto others. Yes, others might need to hear that word or see that particular post, but so do you. If we are too busy showing everybody their reflection while ignoring our appearance, we will never be presentable. It’s okay to look in the mirror and be aware of our flaws. I understand that it might be frightening to see how disheveled we are. But its even scarier to keep walking around like that. Realization is not a bad thing. It might be a shock and it might be unpleasant but it’s a step towards healing. It is a sign of growth. You can’t grow if you’re not aware of the things inhibiting your growth. Don’t be too busy concerning yourself with the speck in your brother’s eye when your reflection in the mirror is showing you a whole log in your own eyes.
“You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” Matthew 7:5
Mark 12:31 states that the second greatest commandment is to love your neighbor as you love yourself. If you don’t love yourself enough to take out that thick ol’ log in your eye, how can you love your neighbor enough to take the speck out of their eye? You are nitpicking at someone else’s mess when your own house is in disarray. That’s not loving, it’s hypocrisy.
I remember I saw a post on Instagram about something along the lines of “people expect you to treat them a certain way but never reciprocate it”. I immediately thought to myself “yep, Tom and Jerry definitely need to see this message”. Afterward, it occurred to me that instead of waiting on others to see something and then do something about it, I should do something about it especially since I have no excuse – I’ve already seen it. It made me understand that instead of concerning myself with how others could be better to me, I could always treat them the way I expected to be treated. Matthew 7:12 says, “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets”. You want them to check in on you more? check in on them. You want them to understand your perspective? Understand theirs. You want them to be a better friend to you? Be a better friend to them.
I know some people might read this, and say well I’ve already done this; I’ve tried being better to them and loving them yet nothing. This is why it is imperative that you have a relationship with God and spend time with him. Talk to the holy spirit and let him guide and counsel you in everything that you do and how to go about certain kinds of people. Proverbs 3:6 says, “Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.”
Finally, Awareness should lead to action; if you look in the mirror and you become aware of this huge boil on your face, you will do everything in your power to fix it and make it go away, no? Likewise, once you become aware of character flaws and bad habits you should take action.
4 Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. 5 For we are each responsible for our own conduct