January 07, 2009

A Peek in the Mirror

James 1:19-27

The man who looks intently into the perfect law … will be blessed …
James 1:25


I was sitting on a bench in Central Park a few years ago, munching a sandwich and watching New Yorkers pass in front of me. More than a few stopped at the small booths of artists who had set up shop to sketch caricatures. For twenty dollars, an artist would create a drawing that would highlight your prominent features (like big ears, a long nose, or a pointy chin).

I wondered why anyone would want this done. Caricature drawings aren’t usually flattering. A camera can get you a better likeness—and for less cash! But maybe some people wanted a caricature done to see how others might see them! That would be a rather daring venture!

That got me to thinking. If God sketched my spiritual caricature, what would he bring out in stark detail? Hopefully some positive features of my personality. But God would also sketch the faults and failings that I have preferred to keep under wraps for years.

James tells us that it’s possible to discover what that sketch might look like. All we need to do is look at ourselves in the mirror of God’s law. When we do, we discover that we aren’t the persons God intends us to be. Sin has disfigured us spiritually.

But here is good news: Christ has come so that we can take on his character and be like him. Looking more like Jesus is what it means to grow in the Christian faith!

Lord, sin has disfigured our character so that we are not the people you intend us to be. In relationship with Jesus, help us to look more like him each day. Amen.

About the author — Bob Heerspink

Dr. Robert Heerspink was director of Back to God Ministries International from 2006 until 2011, when he passed away. He had previously pastored several Christian Reformed churches. Bob loved to write and was a frequent contributor to the Today devotional.

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