Our Soul’s Reflection

 

When you look at yourself in the mirror, what is it that you see?

Do you see a beautiful and unique daughter of God, a coheir with Christ, a woman called to a particular vocation?

Yeah, me neither.

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We’re too concerned by the lines that are growing deeper, or the blemishes that seem to multiply quicker than rabbits, the bags under our eyes from months (years) of interrupted sleep. We see only the imperfect features and critique the way that we look based on the way we think we should look.

Sometimes we get despondent.

We want the effortless beauty of the airbrushed woman on the cover of the magazine or the Instagram feed.

We fail to recognise our own beauty and dignity. And it hurts. We feel like we’ll never measure up.

And yet, if I asked you what you saw when you held up a mirror to your soul, what would you see?

If you’re like me, it might just be some of those less than ideal behaviours the kids are beginning to display.

The truth is, as women bombarded by secular lies about beauty, we can spend more time worrying about our appearance rather than our soul.

And sometimes the spark we need to reassign our focus might just be the reaction of our 8 year old son when dealing with a younger brother, or a 5 year old daughter when she’s getting frustrated.

The old ‘do as I say not as I do’ doesn’t cut it if you want your children to be mirroring the good and holy in you.

Children learn by example and many behavioural experts argue that we have until about the age of 9, some say 7, to influence the behaviour of our children and their responses to particular situations.

That’s a scary thought. Especially as my eldest son has just turned 9.

But even as I considered that this may be true, I cannot fully discount the immense power or prayer in turning the tide in harmful behaviours, I began to wonder about what sort of people my children would be.

Certainly, as a parent we tend to see more of the negative behaviour. At home I’m often prompting manners but I have been on the receiving end of adults complimenting my children’s behaviour and manners when I haven’t been present.

I also had a friend tell me that she thought my children were far better behaved than all of the kids – including her nieces and nephews – she’d been in contact with. Whilst this was a lovely compliment I’m certainly not convinced; come and visit me at around 5.30pm this afternoon and I’ll prove it!

And we also have the opportunity to recognise and try to prune away the less than ideal in our children and encourage and nurture the good. But in order to be effective at this we have to be willing to do the same for ourselves.

We cannot send mixed messages by punishing our children for behaviour we let ourselves get away with.

I’m not saying that we have to be perfect, but we should be striving towards it. And this means recognising and treating our own spiritual blemishes so that we can better aid our children do the same.

It also means accepting censure and being accountable. Your relationship with your spouse should be bringing both of you closer to Heaven. Help each other faithfully, by being accountable to each other. One simple way to do this is to pick a virtue you want to grow in order to diminish that vice. Examine your conscience of an evening to see how you went that day and, rather than become depressed if it was a provoking day, offer your efforts to God and start afresh in the morning.

You might even be able to get Hubby to alert you, subtly and gently, that you’re struggling right at this moment with that vice. Offer a prayer together in that moment, and make progress along the narrow road.

Looking in the mirror can be depressing and looking at our soul even more so. But God doesn’t want us to dwell on our blemishes. Jesus has made all things new.

All we need to do is accept that, while we are not perfect, we are loved. We are each unique and special.

Take the time to assess and improve your spiritual reflection so that you become clear enough to reflect God’s love to everyone around you.

 

 

 

Filed Under: FaithFeaturedJust For MumPersonal GrowthSpirituality

About the Author: Emily is a former ACPA award winning editor and journalist turned stay at home mum and blogger. She lives on a farm in regional NSW with her husband and their five children where she spends the time she should be doing housework reading books and writing posts.

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