Scripture: Paul wrote: “Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.  Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” I  Corinthians 13:12, NIV
Glass_darkly
    It was one of those “Aha!” moments.  I happened to glance up and note my reflection in the window, mirroring my every move as I sat eating my breakfast on a dark, wintery morning.  I thought, “What a perfect example of Paul’s allegory of “Seeing through a glass darkly“ in the ‘Love Chapter’  of his letter to the Corinthians.” (Chapter 13, King James version.)
    I knew what lay outside, on the other side of the window, but I could see nothing, because the contrast between my lighted table and the night outside transformed the window glass into a mirror, albeit an imperfect one.
    So that’s what Paul was talking about! We are unable to see the heavenly kingdom from the light of this life, seeing only an imperfect image of ourselves, because of the contrast of what is, and what is to be.
    If I sit long enough, watch and wait long enough, the dawning will come. First, I will start to see a glimmer of red, presaging the advent of the dawn. I will begin to note the outlines of the trees in the woods, ghostly shapes only, backlit by the rising sun.
    Soon, the image of the garage will take shape, although just a dark, blank area at first. Soon, I know, my image in the glass will fade, and the scene of God’s great kingdom will fill my view in all its radiant splendor.
    It was there all along; there was just such a contrast between the two worlds that the larger, more permanent one, was invisible.
    By the time I sat down for my noon meal, the once hidden had been made plain. I could readily see the roughness of the bark on the trees, the branches moving slightly in the breeze. Squirrels use it for both a home and a gym, scurrying about, seeking their own lunch. Birds visit the feeders, placed there for the purpose of both providing them with food and us humans with visual enjoyment. Now the mirror effect is reversed; we can watch them, while they can not see us.
    There is a vital, everlasting truth here. When we see ourselves only, though as in a glass, darkly, we focus on the image that we do see, not on the image of the world on the other side. Even though we leave the table and the window, in essence, we continue to focus on “our” world, and not God’s world.
    Sometimes we need reminders of what lies on the “other side.” Regular times for meditation, for worship, Bible reading, and contemplation, bring us back for the ‘meal’ at the ‘window,’ to reveal God in all of His Glory.
January 7, 2007

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