Lent Day Four: Here’s Looking At You

When I worked at Curves, one of the first things we would do with new members (after we orient them to the whole program) is complete a figure analysis. Basically, we would have them mount the dreaded weight determiner and grab the tape measure to find out the sum total of their girth. Did that sound ominous? It was supposed to. The dread that most of those women feel in that moment is colossal. They had spent so much time and energy avoiding the truth, that it was a very scary and humbling task to meet it—and in the presence of another person, yet!

Perhaps you’ve never thought of it this way, but it’s very easy to not see what you don’t look at. How many of you read your food labels? Before you sign off on something, do you read all the fine print? The list could go on and on of things external, but what about things within? On the one hand, we could consider all the health signals that we’ve ignored, the doctor’s visits we’ve postponed because we didn’t want to hear what they had to say. Then there’s the stuff of spirit and emotions that we’ve opted not look at either. The AA people understand the importance of that honest self-inventory. What about relationships that we’ve ignored?

James invites us to the mirror: 22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. 23 For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. 24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. 25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it. (James 1:22-25)

So here’s your homework. Yes, homework. Carve out a few minutes from your very hectic schedule—that busyness is part of the problem. We stay busy to avoid having to give ourselves—and God more than a passing glance. You could sit at a table with pen and paper or you could stand in front of a full-length mirror. Do what works for you. But do this: ask God what you need to see. Ask for his forgiveness at avoiding, denying, and running. Stay long enough to hear his answers. Let him tell you how wonderful you are and how much he loves you. Then commit to giving him more than a passing glance.

Take that kind of time and you won’t forget it—or regret it.