I often wonder who people see when they look at me. Do they see a middle-aged, over-weight, opinionated pain in the neck? Or, do they see a clear reflection of the living Son of God? I don’t know how many other people struggle with the frustration imposed by always feeling somehow less than… (Whatever, you fill in the blank). It seems that even the Apostle Paul felt this way. So, I suppose I’m in good company.
Romans 7:14-15 “So the trouble is not with the law, for it is spiritual and good. The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin. I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.” (NLT)
This is not one of those problems with an easy fix. (I don’t really seem to have those types of problems. Do you?) I cannot simply open the medicine cabinet of scripture, pop a few readily accessible Bible verses and immediately see the new-man in the mirror. Who I was keeps getting in the way of who I am in Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:16-18 “So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:” (NIV)
I’m not sure this is going to strike a harmonious chord with anyone except me, but the way I read scripture, Christ came to turn our understanding upside-down: the last became first, the leader is the servant of all, do good to those who hate you. Following that train of thought, the question changes from how do people see me into how do I see other people.
God has given us the responsibility of ministering reconciliation, healing and wholeness into those around us. As we have been forgiven, we now forgive. As He has shown us mercy, we now offer mercy to others. We walk in the grace of God. We share His grace with everyone…NOT ONLY the deserving.
Romans 5:7-9 “For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.” (KJV)
Are we reflecting Christ today?