Bible Reading: James 1:19-27
You’ve probably walked past some people before who you could bet that based on their appearance, they don’t own a mirror in their house.
Or they think that a Compact Disc (CD) is only about the music on it. Maybe you do too?
Resuming on campus as a largely domesticated young man and coming to live with a bunch of very exposed men (most were more like former life sojourners) brought a lot of revelations about life to the front burner for me.
Some were as simple as ways to get things done; others were as complicated as the sheer impossibilities that exist in humanity.
One of my big revelations as a new undergraduate was that a Compact Disc (CD) could do the exact same job as a dressing mirror.
Well, generally speaking.
At least, for a guy.
Who wants to go out without knowing how they look? Who wants to show up publicly without tidying up privately?
Our reading today brings us the spiritual parallel of that truth. Don’t just run through the motions of life without stopping to check yourself.
Don’t show up publicly what you aren’t tidying up privately.
We do a lot of life in the public spaces. There’s a lot of demands from work and school and relationships and community and all that.
There’s a lot of our service and influence that is expressed in public spaces. A lot of your plans for the rest of the year and for the new year are probably pointing towards public demands and expressions.
That’s why I’m grateful for this surge series: it’s a timely check to ensure that we aren’t showing up publicly what we haven’t tidied privately.
Our reading today leaves three challenges with us:
1. It is wisdom to stand in front of the mirror
Don’t be the ‘i-dont-send-anybody’ kind of person that doesn’t look in the mirror before going out. We need these checks! We need that sense of ‘how am I in the light of how I should be?’ We can’t afford to be running at all these public demands without private checks. By God’s grace, we’ll spend the next seven days embracing the timely wisdom of standing in front of the mirror.
2. It is honourable to be sincere about what you see
James encourages that we don’t ‘deceive ourselves’. We must look in the mirror in such a way that we’re allowing it to ‘look into us’. Why play cover ups when you know the truth? We should never walk away from mirror conversations without clarity of the real picture.
3. It is responsible to make the right changes
It is important to go beyond the honour of sincerity to the responsibility of action. As we look in the mirror together over the next few days, we must be taking responsibility in the areas of our shortcomings. We must be seeing how to do life better, especially as we look to all that’s ahead of us.
That’s my challenge to you today as we start out this journey: Be wise. Be honourable. Be responsible.
Don’t show up publicly what you aren’t tidying privately.
Something To Pray
As we start this Surge Check series, would you pray and ask God today for a clearer revelation of where you are, and for a sincere and responsible heart to make the right changes that you might need to make.