Tentatively, I walk towards the throne with my eyes down, wishing myself invisible because His presence is so striking. And yet despite my timidity, He manages to draw my gaze upward and every fear melts away.
“Yes my beloved.”
“Jesus, I… I need your help.”
“Always – whatever you ask in my name.”
“Okay. I need your help to forgive myself.”
He gives me a warm, knowing smile that says more than words ever could. A smile that acknowledges His expectancy for this moment. A smile that reminds me of His forgiveness. A smile that invites me to ask for help again. A smile that reassures that He is trustworthy.
He rises from His throne and extends His hand to me. As I take it, I feel His scars – scars that bear all of my sin, guilt, and shame – scars that remind me I have already been forgiven by the only One who has victory over sin.
He leads me to a mirror, and we stand facing it hand-in-hand. Although He is standing beside me there is no reflection of Him. I do a double-take but He nods, reassuring that I am seeing this as He intends.
His eyes shift back to my reflection and He says, “Look closely.”
Intently, I study my semblance, making extra effort to note every flaw and defect. I feel the shame creep in: weight on my chest and knots in my stomach. Painfully I remember all the sin that mars my heart and soul. The pit of guilt feels like a vortex, pulling me deeper into the darkness. Soon, I forget who I am… and Who stands beside me.
Jesus squeezes my hand ever-so-gently and says, “ You must let it go. Give it over to me, my beloved.”
And I know exactly what He means. No longer do I want to carry this burden; no longer do I want this weighty, spiraling black hole of guilt defining how I see myself. So as I acknowledge this to Him, something releases from the core of my being – feeling like an explosion firing in all directions. At the same time, the mirror shatters and disappears, revealing a second, perfect mirror.
The two reflected figures are brilliant, shining, clothed in dazzling iridescent robes of white. I glance at Jesus, smiling back at me with that all-knowing gaze, and He gently gives my hand a squeeze again.
“This,” He nods to my new reflection, “this is how I see you, my beloved. This is also how you can see yourself when you allow my righteousness, my forgiveness, and my grace to define you. You are a new creation; the old has passed away and the new has come.”
“For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.”
– 1 Corinthians 13:12-
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, [they are] a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
– 2 Corinthians 5:17-