As you move through your week, I pray you are reminded that God has specifically and uniquely crafted you to reflect His love, right where you are. On purpose and for a purpose.
I’ve been clinging to this promise lately because I’ve found myself reflecting a lot of emotions this week, and loving has not consistently made it to the top of the list.
It’s like I’m in hyper-reactive mode. Do you have times like that? I’m quick to tell my kids “no,” I don’t hesitate to respond to my husband’s irritation with more irritation, or when someone says they are worried, I go into full-blown worst-case-scenario planning. I feel like I’m just walking around and reacting to every emotion and energy that comes my way.
I don’t like this “defensive- Devany- mode,” so I take a deep breath, slow down and try to pay attention. What I’ve found, which seems to be a consistent pattern, is that when I’m stressed out, over-tired, overwhelmed or afraid, I get defensive. And I think much of our world would say that they feel similarly right now. It seems fear is everywhere. So it’s only natural that we are reflecting what surrounds us and what is capturing our attention.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that we find ourselves reflecting because we we are made to mirror. Scripture tells us this is on purpose and for a purpose:
“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”II Corinthians 3:18 NKJV
We are to behold God’s glory and reflect back His love through which He promises to transform us into His likeness. It’s like when you see the sun reflected in a mirror. It’s light bounces, multiplies and fills the space around you and before you know it, all you can see is the sun itself.
But when I fall asleep to my life and go into auto-pilot, I simply reflect whatever comes my way… I mirror whatever it is I’m choosing to look at and pay attention to… whether that’s irritation or frustration or fear.
But in His ever-present gentleness, God continues to extend an invitation to me, just as He does to all of us.
He invites us to a life filled with His light. A life where we seek His face, instead of the face of the world. And as we seek, we discover His love bouncing off of every circumstance, situation and person we encounter.
It fills the rooms where we stand. It’s enough to overwhelm us.
It shows up in the small and quiet moments that I can miss it if I’m not careful.
The squeeze of my husband’s hand, the call from a friend, a surprise kiss from my toddling niece, a hug from my parents, the belly laugh from my daughter, or my son bobbing his head along to music as we drive with windows down. (Don’t judge that it’s Lizzo…”Good as Hell” which he sings, “hair toss, check my nails, baby how you feelin’? Feelin’ good as good.” Yep, we will go with “good, as good.” No one teach him the real lyrics please! I will be mom-shamed!) I think the mohawk helps, who doesn’t feel good with a mohawk?!
But I digress…
Jen Hatmaker says,
“We pass on what we believe internally.”
If we believe that we are deeply loved and firmly held then we can pass on love when faced with fear and hope when faced with uncertainty.
One of my favorite prayers that I turn to when I’m stressed out, over-tired, overwhelmed or afraid is,
I am the one in whom Christ dwells and delights.
I live in the unshakeable Kingdom of God.
The Kingdom is not in trouble and neither am I.~ Jim Smith
This truth reminds me to respond in love instead of react in defensiveness because God is near and He promises to protect and never give up.
I think the truth is, we’ve all been created to reflect.
And when we mirror love, we feel alive because our hearts are coming alive to God himself.
His heart pulses for the world. He wants to connect with us. He wants to be found and draw us into the glory of His Kingdom. His love-soaked, unshakeable Kingdom that is found here and now, in the middle of our everyday, ordinary lives.
May we become aware of what we are looking at and focusing on throughout each day and expectantly seek His face.
And we can trust that as we do, He will keep His promise to love us to life.