I’m not a big fan of mirrors. I heard a comedian once say that Tom Petty is the butt-ugliest man on the planet. If that is the case, then I’m running a close second.
It’s not just that type of mirror that I don’t like, though. I don’t like it when others reflect the same bad behaviors that I have. We all have a tendency not to notice our own flaws. However, we are quick to judge when we see the same flaws in others.
I went to a hole-in-the-wall restaurant near my work the other day and settled in to eat my hot roast beef, potatoes, and baked beans while reading the paper when I heard them talking. There were 3 of them and it became quickly apparent that they were going to talk loud without regard to who might be able to hear them. It also became apparent that they were all on staff at a non-traditional church.
They talked about having to set-up in a gymnasium and how people were enjoying getting to bring drinks into the service. Then they talked about the need of making sure that the greeters made everyone feel welcome and how they need to be about the business of reaching out to people with the love of God.
They talked like this for about 30 minutes. I wasn’t really eavesdropping; they were talking loud enough for anyone nearby to hear. What surprised me is this: even though they were talking about concepts like reaching out to people and showing people that they care, when they left they did not even make eye contact with me. That being the case, they also didn’t invite me to church or talk to the waitress about visiting their church.
I got a little irritated as I thought about it. They were talking “a good game,” but failed to put their ideas into action with the real live people that had been placed nearest to them.
That is when I realized that I often do the exact same thing. I talk about the need to show kindness and God’s love to people, then do a good job of ignoring the people that I say Christians need to reach.
Of course, there are times that I do well in this area. There are other times, though, that I fall far short of what I say that I believe.
Consistency. That is what more believers need. Our actions need to line up with our words and beliefs. If they don’t, then the words and beliefs really mean nothing.
I needed that look in the mirror. Maybe you did, too.