This morning I decided I should try to practice some of my dance kickboxing routines that I will be teaching in my class when we go to Florida in January. It’s a fun workout anyway and given the cold temperatures, doing the class provides a great opportunity for a good cardio workout for me indoors. Little did I know HaShem had an even greater agenda. . .
I was practicing in front of a mirror since when I teach I will be facing my class so it’s good practice to teach in reverse. Also, the mirror allows me to analyze my moves to make sure they are good form and clear to follow.
At one point Meghan Trainor’s “Me Too” started to play. Great song. Good bass beat. Fun lyrics. I have heard it countless times. Yet this time, when she said, “If I was you, I’d wanna be me too,” a thought popped into my head that sparked some interesting “reflections”. . .
Often when a person looks in a mirror, actually most often, we see our faults. Bad hair day. Who is that old person in the mirror? This dress is so unflattering. No dessert tomorrow! Yet today, when I heard those words, what I saw was the person looking back at me, not a reflection of the person I sometimes feel I am.
Without our personal filters to influence our thoughts, the mirror merely reflects back how our Abba sees us. It was as if the person in the mirror was looking at me through the eyes of HaShem. That person, my reflection, was looking at me saying, “If I was you, I’d wanna be me too.” HaShem was helping me see me through His Eyes. The lyrics go on to say, “I can’t help loving myself,” for He loves us so.
Our reflections in the mirror are the reverse of how we actually are. Right is left and left is right. Really we are unable to see ourselves accurately when looking in a mirror. For those who look at their reflected image and like what they see, and that is some of us some of the time, that is the goal, for we are created in His Image. More often we notice the imperfections. Yet when we do so we move away from seeing ourselves as He sees us, lovable and beautiful, not just in appearance but on the inside too.
Given our personal filters, the mirror reflects back how we see ourselves rather than the objective reality. So often a thin person will look in a mirror and think he or she looks fat. Unless the mirror was created to distort due to being inexpensive or for a Fun House amusement, it is a true reflection of what is being reflected. Yet our own personal perspectives and filters created through our life’s experiences act to distort the reality. How we interpret or see the reflection is experientially subjective. It is that subjectivity that “reflects” where we are on the perception of “I am beautiful.”
On our journey toward being closer to Him we move toward seeing ourselves as He sees us, lovable and beautiful, not just in appearance but on the inside too. When we see the imperfections we move away from seeing ourselves as He sees us.
Just as a mirror reflects our outer qualities, our inner qualities are reflected in our acts of lovingkindness to others. I remembered as I was practicing in front of the mirror that when I teach the class facing my students in mirror image style, I love watching their faces. When I smile and make them smile the class becomes a place of happiness, an hour away from daily stresses, a place of shalom, and fun! We have the ability through how we express our demeanor to others to share His Love. And those around us can feel His Love shining on them through our interactions. His love light shines through us to those around us.
It’s often challenging to see ourselves as beautiful unless we remember to see ourselves through the eyes of our Creator. The beauty we are seeking is actually not the kind that is reflected in a mirror, but rather, the mirror metaphor helps us to be reminded of the perspective we are seeking to understand more deeply – His view of us, and what He expects of us.
If when we look in the mirror, we can be reminded that HaShem sees the beauty in each of us, not only will we see ourselves differently, but perhaps more importantly, we will have new eyes to see the beauty in others. As we share this circle of love, those around us will see their own beauty, too, inside and out.
And to think, all I planned to do was practice my dance kickboxing moves. . .