Mirror Mirror on the Wall

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On my way to work I usually will put on our local Christian radio station and get my dose of positive energy for the day.  Lately, a bit of daily advice has been blasting through the airwaves and has caught my attention.
The radio personality talks about “taking a look in the mirror” and being “open to criticism” in order to better oneself.  We can get too self-centered at times and people can often give us advice about our actions that we typically wouldn’t notice otherwise.

When I first heard this blurb… unwillingly… I got a tad defensive. Who was this guy and why was he messing up my daily dose of positivity and making me feel so inadequate?  Why would he insist I let someone criticize me about MY actions? I know when I am wrong…I can address those on my own accord!

Of course, God had different plans and each time I turned on the radio I would hear the same low, calm and thoughtful voice echo…. “take a look in the mirror”…”don’t be afraid to listen to what others observe of you…sometimes they see what our self centered selves cannot”  – Ugh, how dare he…

Finally, after what seemed like the hundredth time hearing it…I turned the radio station off and said to myself  “Ok God, what are you trying to teach me here. I have been trying to avoid this message for the past two weeks and here it is again…making me feel a bit unsure of myself and insecure…”

So today, I decided to take my Bible out (NIV)  I started at the beginning…Genesis 3 The Fall of Man.  It talks about Eve taking and giving the forbidden fruit to Adam.

”For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 

When the woman saw the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.

Satan did exactly what he set out to do that day…to trick Eve in to believing a lie.  To sweet-talk her, make her hang on his every word and tempt her.  He made the sin of taking the fruit seem attractive. He disguised the sin. He clothed it in appealing words. Eve must have thought to herself…”Well I know God told me not to…but…it is beautiful… and it does sound good. What the heck, fruit for all!”

I sympathize with Eve. Oh how many times I too have been tricked in to believing my decisions and sins “aren’t that big of a deal…” or “aren’t that bad.”

This small part of the passage shows us something deep about ourselves, and it all started with Eve in the garden with the serpent. 

Our sins do not always appear ugly to us, and the enjoyable sins are the hardest to avoid. (NIV)

How true.Reading this hit me like a ton of bricks and correlated so well with the radio message I had been hearing.

Everyday we need to take a look in the mirror and understand what it is about ourselves that causes us to sin on a daily or regular basis.  Is it materialism? Is it selfishness? Jealousy? Envy?  Greed? Anger? What sin do we commit often that has been clothed in glitz glam and false beauty?

What about us is flawed? (and if your anything like me…there is quite a laundry list)!

My mind bounces back to the radio message…”be open to criticisms and observations from others”

How do we react when someone suggests we have done wrong? Do we correct the mistake or deny that we need to correct it? (NIV)

Do we continue to sin because the temptation we are acting upon is pleasing to us? Has our fallen society made it look attractive and acceptable?  Satan is living among us…tempting us the same way he tempted Eve.

How many times has a loved one said “you get angry too quickly and lose your temper” or…”you are spending money on unnecessary things” or…”your words are hurtful.” and the list goes on…

When we face criticism are we willing to address it? Are we willing to take a look in the mirror and pray for wisdom to correct it?
Although we are not perfect and temptation will be an unavoidable circumstance in our lives…we can start today by addressing the attractive sins that come in to our lives on a regular basis. They may seem small…but overtime can cause big problems! Listen to those around you who may mention your down falls. Take it as an opportunity for growth. Learn from it. Change.And pray about it.