Summary: We often live with a distorted view of who we are, even after coming to Christ. But who does God say we are?
I. Did you ever notice those words that are written on the outside mirror of your car?
A. On many of those mirrors are the words to the effect, “Objects may be closer than they appear.”
B. What those words are saying is that
1. “This mirror gives a distorted view of reality” or
2. “This mirror does not reflect an accurate reflection of reality.”
C. In order to give a broader view of what lies behind, those mirrors are convex, or rounded out and what you see, is not necessarily what you get.
II. Mirrors can be like that.
A. Perhaps some of us are old enough to remember those so called, “Fun Houses.”
B. Often Fun Houses had a section that would include mirrors that were bent or warped.
1. When you looked into them, you saw yourself, you just didn’t see yourself as you really were.
2. What you saw reflected in those mirrors was not an accurate representation of the truth.
a. Maybe you looked larger than you actually were, and some of us certainly don’t need that.
b. Maybe the reflection you saw was actually smaller than you really were, and some of us may not even want that.
C. Fun house mirrors actually reflect who we are, it is just that what we see is distorted, and not an accurate reflection.
III. In his epistle James must have had something similar in mind for he writes - “Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like” (James 1:22-23, NASB)
A. James says,
1. Looking into the Word of God,
2. Examining the Word of God,
3. Perhaps even Believing the Word of God must be followed by a change of action.
B. Now often we look at that passage, and beat ourselves up to one level or another because we can all look at areas in our lives where we have been less that faithful to what we know is truth.
1. Certainly we can all do that to one extent or another, BUT
2. There is another truth that is contained in what James has written here.
IV. As I think about the coming months ahead of us as a church, I want to be honest with you and say, “I have times when I am nervous.”
A. I mean flat out scared.
B. I say things like,
1. Who am I to attempt to lead our church through rebuilding?
2. I don’t have the talents to do this.
3. I don’t have the training to do this.
4. I’ve never done this before, so what do I think I am doing?
V. Sometimes we say things like that in life.
A. I’ve never done this before!
B. I can’t succeed in this!
C. I don’t have the ability to do that!
VI. We are fearful to step into the unknown, because our internal mirrors, the things we have heard said to us and about us tell us that we are not really worth very much.
A. Often over the course of our lives, words have been spoken to us that have distorted the reality of who we are, and what we are capable of being and doing.
B. And all to often, over the course of our lives, the words that our minds are reflecting become our reality.
VII. James says the person that looks into the Word of God, and then does not apply what he has seen is like a person that looks into a mirror and then forgets what he looks like.
VIII. James says, the person that looks into the Word of God, and then does not apply what he has seen is living in light of a distorted reflection of the truth.
IX. James says, that the person that looks into the Word of God, and does not see who they really are is has forgotten who God has made him to be.
X. I believe James is also saying that many of us are brokenhearted and wounded by what the world has reflected to us, and what we really need is to have our hearts mended, and our wounds bound.
A. The writer of Psalms says that there is a person that has seen so much worth in us that He was willing to die for us.
B. The writer of Psalms says in chapter 147:3 "God heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds."
XI. Yet, how does God heal us and bind us?
A. I believe one major method God uses is to change our way of thinking.
1. Psalm 23:7 reads - "For as he thinks within himself, so he is."