Whom do you choose to see when you look in the mirror? Does this seem to be a ridiculous question? I will admit that a few months ago, I would have dismissed it as a silly question with an obvious answer but today I ponder the possibility of a less obvious yet very real answer.
Not long ago, I had the joy of sitting with my five year old grandson as he drifted off to sleep. With my heart full of God’s peace and love, I went to get myself ready for bed. As I dried my face, I got a glimpse of myself in the bathroom mirror but who I saw gazing back at me revealed a new possible answer to the question “Whom do I choose to see when I look in the mirror?” The following is my reflection, my dialogue with Jesus as He answered my prayer to see myself as God sees me and to know His loving gaze.
Dear Jesus, Thank you for my precious children and grandchildren and for these quiet moments with them. When I see them, Lord, I see You… looking upon their innocence, trust, and vulnerability I feel such tender love and compassion and a longing to love. I have prayed and prayed to see Your loving gaze and for others to see You in my gaze. And as I see my own reflection in this mirror, I wonder, “If I see You, Jesus, in others and others see You in me then maybe could I see You in me?”
And Jesus answered my questions with His gentle words,
“Love yourself as your neighbor. Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto Me. Arise My Beloved and come with Me. My darling, you are altogether beautiful, without flaw and I love you. Together we are one.”
I gazed into my own tear filled eyes, astounded to see a light and beauty I had failed to recognize before. Here, here in me, is My Beloved Lord and Savior. Tenderly, I cupped my cheek in my hand, offering myself the same gentle compassion with which I have loved my children and imagined comforting my sorrowful Lord.
I can love You, Jesus, not only by seeing and loving You in others but by seeing and loving You in myself. Your loving gaze that I have been trying so hard to imagine, it was here in my looking deeply into my own tear-filled eyes in the mirror.
For a fleeting moment, I felt a surge of anxiety and guilt. Am I being prideful or vain looking so long at myself in the mirror? But even as I asked the question, the voice of my Beloved, replied “No, you are not looking with pride and vanity but searching for Me.” Yes, I am looking for You, My Jesus, and I am learning to love the woman You created me to be.
In this moment, I saw myself in a profoundly new Light… I saw myself in the Light of God’s Truth. I embody Christ! Our Lord’s Love, Light, and Resurrection power live in me! I can look in the mirror and choose to see me – my blemishes, imperfection, and flaws – or I can choose to look at myself as I look at others, with the loving gaze of Christ, and see Him living in me.I can look in the mirror and choose to see me - my blemishes, imperfection, and flaws - or I can choose to look at myself as I look at others, with the loving gaze of Christ, and see Him living in me. Click To Tweet
A Closing Prayer: O Jesus, thank you for abiding with me and within me. Help me to walk through my days always remembering the truth that I am called to look with Love and see You in everyone I encounter beginning with the woman I see in the mirror at the start of the day. May my eyes see as You see and reflect Your loving gaze. Lord, let others see You in me and let me see You in myself.