Mirror of the Soul
Originally scheduled for December 4
Most of us
remember with some fondness our childhood days when we had someone
heroic to admire. Your author is of the generation which remembers
Davy Crockett and the Lone Ranger, both of whom paid particular
attention to the correct formation of character in those they met.
It’s normal for children to have people to look up to and admire.
But did you know that adults do the same thing? To ask yourself who
it is that you admire is to open a mirror to your soul. It’s true
for children, it’s true for adults: whoever it is that you admire,
that’s the person you’re trying to be. That is what I want you to
examine this morning. Crack that mirror open and ask yourself, “why
do I admire him or her?” The answer to that question will give you a
good deal of insight concerning you, not the person you admire.
passage Paul outlines the contemplation of your mind examining
someone or something. He gives us a list of tests we can apply to
the people we admire — and ourselves.
sense of fair dealing and honesty.
person one who deals uprightly with other people? Not a hypocrite,
but one who walks the talk?
Righteousness—doing the right thing, doing it first, not last, and
doing it no matter the cost?
this someone clearly committed to faithfulness? The guy with the
dirty joke, or the guy whose wife knows he is faithful to her?
Loveliness—the word originally meant “friendly toward.” Someone who
never met a man he didn’t like?
reputation—has he practiced being a Christian so well that everyone
part of communion is self-examination. Look at the person you admire
and look at what you’ve done to become like that person. Then look
at the characteristics given above and examine their character in
your life. You may be surprised at some of the ugliness you see in
It is not
sufficient just to examine yourself. If you find something
deficient, you need a plan to correct it. Confess those sins, repent
of them, and just possibly find your self a new hero to admire.