mirror reflection

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

In one of my meditative readings today, I read a suggestion that we strive to mirror God’s spirit, truth, compassion, and love. I wish I could say my thoughts and actions always reflect those attributes, but, of course, I cannot. Then I thought of the fairy tale “Snow White” and the magic mirror constantly being asked by the queen “who was the fairest in all the land.” God sent me that image to remind me that it’s not “all about me” ——that I should not focus on myself but rather on what I “radiate” to others. He doesn’t want me to look in the mirror and see an aging, tired, “Sam’s Club Sized Person.” He wants me to see a person smiling and happy from the inside out—-someone whose appearance communicates love and compassion rather than self-centered vanity or self-depreciation. If I can reflect genuine (not superficial) aspects of God’s spirit, then I  can manifest God’s love and share it with my human brothers and sisters.

If I reflect God’s spirit, then my immediate reactions to ordinary day-by-day experiences should be loving and compassionate—–not angry and judgmental. To clarify, I’ve made a brief table to illustrate both God-reflective and self-centered responses to three situations I have experienced:

Situation Self-Centered Response God-Reflective Response
Car cuts me off in traffic I get angry, curse, tell them how to drive I think to myself they must have a lot on their mind, I hope they make it safely through the day
When I’m shopping, a nearby child whines, talks disrespectfully to his grandmother, is manipulative, is loud and demanding—this goes on for about 10 minutes. My immediate thought is how I’d like to grab the child, get in his face, and tell him how he should be behaving—or worse, spank him and send him out of the store to fend for himself. When the argument has finished, I smile and tell the grandmother she has a very persistent child. She tells me it runs in the family. And, indeed, her persistence lasted longer than her grandchild’s did.
My dog goes berserk running through the house, bullying one of my other dogs, clawing at my sofa like he is trying to dig to China. I yell at him to stop and threaten him with “going to the pound.” I realize he is “jealous” because I am paying attention to my computer instead of him. I hold him tight when he jumps into my lap, pet him and talk soothingly to him until he quiets down .

In reality, my initial “thought” response to all three of these situations was “self-centered”—-but at least for the last two, I redirected my response to the one that more closely mirror’s God’s spirit, truth, compassion, and love. Granted, I may have a spoiled dog that needs me to reflect God’s spirit of “tough-love” a bit more, but I just wanted to show you how I have to work at mirroring God’s perspective. I am making progress in my actions, but I still need to work on my initial “thought response.”

AA’s “Big Book” talks about the importance of honesty, openness, willingness, and taking action based on a strong-spiritual foundation. I believe the progress I make in reflecting  these AA principles in my life, the more progress I will make in reflecting God’s spirit, truth, compassion, and love.

How does the concept of mirroring fit into your life? What values do your thoughts and actions reflect?

Please comment as I look forward to reading your thoughts and comments on this topic. God bless and keep you.