Friday, November 10, 2006

Poor Reflections

Verse of the Day - 1 Corinthians 13:12 Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. (NIV)

If you were to talk on the phone with a police artist, could you describe yourself well enough that he or she could draw you? No fair looking in a mirror or at a picture of yourself. Quick, think about your face and try to describe it. It's easy to get the main features, eye color, hair color, skin tone, but it's actually pretty difficult to provide specific details beyond that. Most likely we would exaggerate some features (those we especially like or dislike) and ignore others.

Even if you could help the artist create a stunning likeness, it is only the external parts that would be shown, not who you really are. No drawing, not even a photograph, can portray the real you.

One of my favorite exercises in leadership development training is to have each participant introduce himself or herself to another person. The room buzzes with conversations about where people work, what their jobs are, personal hobbies and interests, and family descriptions. Then I ask the participants to describe themselves without talking about job, family, or hobbies. There is usually a dead silence - we don't really know who we are without the trappings of everyday life.

If we don't know ourselves well, how can we possibly understand God and His majesty? So many things happen on earth that we can't comprehend. That doesn't mean they are wrong, it just shows how little we are capable of grasping about the workings of the world. Yet God sees it all. He knows us perfectly, and His plan is brilliant if you know all the details.

When I don't understand why something is happening in my life, I try to remember that I don't even fully know myself (too bad I don't do that before I struggle for days with wonder and worry). It's not my job to understand, just to obey. I'm thankful that our God is all knowing and in control. With the added knowledge that He wins in the end it is easier to accept things that don't make sense to me. I'm really looking forward to seeing the details of His big picture when I get to Heaven!

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