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Monday, November 25, 2013

I need reading glasses... there I said it.

1 Corinthians 3:12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. now I know in part then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.

If there is one item I have learn to have a love/hate relationship with it is definitely the mirror.  If I wake up struggling with my body image and get dressed and look in the mirror and it suddenly tells me how big I am or how I don't look good in whatever it is I hate it but if it reveals something in my teeth or nose before speaking to someone or if I have i something in my eye that keeps me from seeing I love it (well love isn't the exact word but I am thankful in the moment).  I am coming to realize that I need glasses. I use to be able see things from far away and now as I near the age of 39 I find myself tilting things at an angle or holding things back at a distance so I can see without a blur.  I will at some point break down and do the whole reading glasses thing and start reading and seeing things with much better clarity.  As I read this verse in 1 Corinthians I realized that the way see things in this life whether it be in front of a mirror or in front of circumstances that seem beyond repair we can't and will not see things clearly until we first see Jesus clearly. He is not your punisher instead He is your redeemer. He is not waiting on you to once again screw up instead He is waiting with open arms to love you beyond your comprehension. I looked at this verse and three words popped out at me. The first word is dimly; it simply means limited or insufficient amount of light. Dim means skeptical, pessimistic attitude. The second word is fully; it means completely in a full manner and third word is known and it means to be recognized.  As I replaced those words with the actual definitions I read the verse as this...

For Now we see in a mirror with limited or insufficient amount of light with even a skeptical or pessimistic attitude. BUT then face to face. Now I know in part that I shall know completely even as I have been completely recognized.  

We allow the things that blur our vision to take root to thoughts and then before long our attitude and actions follow. For some it is giving in to that addiction once again that has you consistently around the throat. For some its the dirtiness of your past. For others its the circumstances you have no control over that seem to continually strip you from seeing the FREEDOM and HOPE that Jesus wants you to so clearly see. Lean in,  He wants you to know that nothing ever surprises Him and that He loves you regardless of your current season. I love the very next verse it says this in (the message) verse 1But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.  WOW!  We cannot see the big picture nor are we suppose to. To trust steadily simply means that no matter the outcomes you don't let it disturb you upset you or move you from the feet of Jesus because you are planted firmly. To hope unswervingly means that when the world looks to the chaos of your life, the consequences of your sin or the things that could and will knock you down that those around you do not see you falling apart they see you clinging to Jesus which is our Hope. To love extravagantly means you love without restraint. You literally blow peoples minds with your generosity. When you only see whats in front of you then you can't be thinking kingdom minded it becomes all about you just trying to exist.  I was watching a documentary on you tube about human trafficking and afterwards I sat there in shock. I cried, and I could feel this anger rising. I work with girls weekly that have been rescued and when I watched this video it hurt worse because I now have names and faces attached to this horrible thing that is modern day slavery.  I closed my computer and I could hear God say go read Psalm 111:7. I immediately grabbed my bible and this is what it says; The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy; God so sweetly whispered into the depths of my soul "Holly its my hands that are faithful and just and I am using your mouth and your hands as my instrument to bring change." I was speechless. I was so focused on the big picture and that overwhelmed and swallowed my efforts up. But zooming back and seeing God and knowing He isn't surprised by the evil of this world is what pushes me to daily give of my hands and words. We encounter people everywhere we go and we honestly have no idea the back stories that follow frustrations.  I challenge you to embrace the truth of these verses. Your hands are His hands so serve and love with all you have. The end of verse 13 in 1 Corinthians says "and the best of the three is love". The only way people are going to truly see God is through your love. Do you love your husband without restraint? Do you love your parents, church, co-workers with elaborate measures. John 13:35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” Today hold the mirror up to your heart and just like it tells me whats in my teeth or nose let it show you how you are trusting, hoping and loving today. Be encouraged and love without restraint!! 

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