For my birthday, my husband purchased me a full-length mirror. After a year of listening to me gawk over every mirror we passed in a store, he finally satisfied my longing by surprising me with one. It was only a matter of time before my two kids became obsessed with looking at their reflection in the mirror. One day as my son peered into his own eyes, I asked him what he saw.
His mouth turned into a grin, and he whispered, “my daddy.”
Imagine yourself at a carnival walking through a funhouse full of crazy mirrors. As you pass each mirror, the images, though all of you, reflect differently. In one mirror, your frame is stretched vertically, another makes you wide, and yet another turns your body into a wavy mirage. Despite the differences, each mirror reflects the same—a distortion of you.
As God casted out His voice into the void to create the heavens and the earth, He made something from nothing and declared it was good. But He broke that rhythm in Genesis when He decided to create humankind in His own image (Genesis 1:26). And after breathing life into the dust, He distinguished humanity from the rest of creation. Bearing the image of God is what sets humankind apart, for He did not create the brilliant stars or the majestic mountains in His likeness. But when sin entered the world, that glorious image, though not destroyed, became distorted—much like the mirrors in a funhouse.
The good news of the gospel is what enters the room of distorted mirrors. Instead of wiping out every mirror, God sent His Son to restore the false images created by sin. By accepting the gift of the gospel, we become aware of who we truly are—both borne from dust and bearing the image of God (1Corinthians 15:49).
And though we wait until the glorious day of Christ’s return to experience the joy of being perfect reflections of the Father, every day is an opportunity to let this gospel truth be at work in our lives. As we humbly allow God to sharpen the image in the mirror, the earth is filled with the glory of how God uses our humanity to reveal Himself to all humankind.
The gracious gift of the gospel is that, like my son, when we catch a glimpse of ourselves in the mirror, we see our Father’s likeness stamped upon us. The love of the gospel is found in seeing His image in our neighbors and extending charity to them because we see the worth that God gave them. And the hope of the gospel is that one day when we see our great Redeemer, the flawed mirrors we once peered into will be made perfect.