Reflections

Genesis 9:6

English Standard Version (ESV)
6 “Whoever sheds the blood of man,
by man shall his blood be shed,
for God made man in his own image.

When was the last time you looked in a mirror? Or how about a pool of water?  Have you seen your reflection?  Have you ever seen someone who you also knew their parents?  And when you see them, you marvel at how they remind you of their mother or father.  Have you ever heard someone say that the child is the spittin image of their father?  But before we reflect our parents, we are the reflection of the glory of our heavenly Father or our father the devil.

Ephesians 4:22-24

English Standard Version (ESV)

22to put off your old self,[a] which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

John 8:43-45

English Standard Version (ESV)

43 Why do you not understand what I say? It is because you cannot bear to hear my word. 44 You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45But because I tell the truth, you do not believe me.

What is it that we reflect?  Not only should we wonder how God the Father sees us but how does the people around us see us?  This is not about pleasing people or doing certain things to make them happy.  This is about reflecting whom we say that we love.  This is about reflecting who we say that we have submitted to.  This is about reflecting who we say that we serve, worship, follow, imitate, and desire to be used by.  This is also not about works but more about living out the Gospel.  Many of us don’t really understand being a Christian so we jump to assumptions when this type of topic comes up.  Some of us can’t be quite long enough to hear the word of God because we desire to defend our lukewarm position.  Or we don’t desire to change or can’t change because we don’t truly have salvation.

Just by looking at the two passages of scripture one can see the fence and determine which side that they are on.  There is no hidden meaning or room to interrupt it in a slightly different way to prove a point for calling me judgmental.  Desiring to reflect your heavenly Father comes from loving him more than yourself.  In order to be a mirror you have to put down your quest for your own glory and beauty.  To be a mirror you have to put yourself down and be humble.  To be made low scares us because we love us more than God.  If it wasn’t true then it would not be that hard.  To be made low and to be meek is to put all in God’s hands and trust him with you.

Luke 14:7Now he told a parable to those who were invited, when he noticed how they chose the places of honor, saying to them, 8“When you are invited by someone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in a place of honor, lest someone more distinguished than you be invited by him, 9and he who invited you both will come and say to you, ‘Give your place to this person,’ and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest place. 10But when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that when your host comes he may say to you, ‘Friend, move up higher.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at table with you. 11For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

1 Peter 5:4And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. 5Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” 6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, 7 casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. 10And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. 11 To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

But what does being humble have to do with reflecting God?  What gives us the ability to reflect God is Jesus Christ.  Just as it is written in Ephesians 4:22-24,  Christ has given us a new self “created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”  Through salvation by the work of Christ, we have the Spirit of God dwelling within us working within for our sanctification.  Our sanctification is conforming us into the image of Christ was we produce the fruits of the spirit.   We cannot even began to do these things without being saved by being regenerated by the Holy Spirit and being given a measure of faith to believe.  And when we believe we must submit in humility to Christ because we are sinners who cannot save ourselves.  To be his disciples we must deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow Jesus.  None of this can come out of a proud heart.  This is the Gospel, that Christ lived and died for our sins.  Christ came to live and die for the sick not the healthy.  I proud man will never seek the doctor to heal him.  Only a man who knows that he is dying and knows that he cannot heal himself will seek the great physician.  When we are touched by Christ we will willingly seek to reflect him and we will not have to be convince to do so.   A mirror cannot reflect an image or person that is not before it. If I being the mirror is not always before the Lord, how can I reflect Him?  As soon as I turn away for God, I will no longer reflect him but I will reflect whatever I have given my attention to.

Ephesians 5:1 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. 2And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

Ephesians 5:15 Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. 17Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, 19addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, 20 giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21 submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Likewise, I cannot imitate what I’m not following or watching.  Nor can I imitate what I do not understand or obey.  Neither can I imitate the person I refuse instruction from.  Just as it is written, John 8:43-45; we don’t listen because we cannot hear the words of God nor do we desire to follow them.  We prolong our sinfulness because we refuse to admit that we are sinners or that we our unsaved.  We continue to reflect lies, while our souls are dying.  All the people around are also mirrors and they will reflect back to us what we give off.  They will reflect who we truly are; or they will reflect how we are not.  A person mood changes around us for a reason and its not always a problem with them.  We should be mindful of what we are reflecting not to be people pleasers but to be imitators of God.  We are to reflect his grace as well as be stewards of his grace.  If Christ is our example then we should show it.  As parents, what we reflect in front our children is always visible even though we deny it at times.  If we give off love, love comes back to us.  If we give off judgement, harshness comes back to us.  If we give off stress, anxiety comes back.  This isn’t karma but walking in the spirit and walking in the flesh.  Whoever our father is will determine the our walk and the fruit it produces.  But remember flesh can only produce flesh (John 3:6).  A liar will only produce more lies.  A hateful person will only produce more hate.  A person who truly produces love will receive more love.

Galatians 5

16But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21envy,[d] drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

25If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

To be a godly reflection we must be in Christ Jesus, to be a godly reflection for our children we must be in Christ Jesus, to be a godly reflection for our communities we must be in Christ Jesus and to be a godly reflection for the world we must be in Christ Jesus and we can’t do the same things that the world does.  We can’t say that we are reflecting Christ without having integrity.

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