GraceNotes: Holding the Space for … Reflection
#74 — June 1, 2018
Humanity was created in the image of God; our love is a reflection of his.
— Meir Soloveichik
Greetings, Inspired Seekers!
Isn't life funny? Isn't it strange how the everyday little things we do, somehow, change without our really noticing, like dust accumulating on our mirrors? Everything is the same. And then, it's not.
Well, I walked by my somewhat dusty mirror the other day and looked at my reflection. I was caught off-guard as I noticed a few more little lines on my face, accentuated by the shadows of the mid-day sun. And it occurred to me that I don't check the mirror as often as I used to in earlier days. Curious.
Changes happen, many times, without our being conscious of taking any action, yet, something is working within us to cause transformation. Well, it seems to me that spiritual transformation happens as God – however you define the Divine – works through us. We are often unaware, blissfully going about our lives when, suddenly, we see the world in a different way, our heart is opened unexpectedly or the pain we felt has dissolved. Curious.
However, if we don't regularly check our spiritual mirror, we can miss those changes. So – what or who are your spiritual mirrors? Where are your models and sources of self-reflection? Where are those touch points of transformation?
When we see patience, as in Mother Mary, we recognize it and can mirror it. When we see compassion, as in Kuan Yin, we can open up to it. When we see humility, as in The Buddha, we soften our edges and are less focused on winning or being right. The fact is, if we do not witness and experience the characteristics of spiritual growth in others, how will we learn and practice and grow? If we do not pause before the mirror, how will we see the changes or remove the dust from the reflection?
We are all connected and we live in a communal society, led by those who came before and those who teach us now, with their presence. These spiritual guides are not interested in reflecting only the pretty parts but, like the mirror on the wall, they expose the parts of us that are fully present and ripe for change. They serve as teacher, prophet and caregiver, all in one. There is no magic beauty cream but there is a spiritual balm to heal, cleanse and help us grow. It's called grace.
This gift of grace flies in the face of our culture, many times. For grace is loving, compassionate and always helpful. It is always available and it is always honest. Just like that mirror.
So, take a look at the many reflecting ponds and mirrors that surround you as go about your day. Pause, look deeply. Don't be afraid of newly discovered lines. They are the markers of growth. For someday, if we are really lucky, we will be a mirror for another soul trying to grow!
Monthly Affirmation: I look in the mirror and see the changes and the need for change. I am not afraid.
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