Will you be my mirror?
"We look into mirrors but we only see the effects of our times on us - not our effects on others." (Pearl Bailey) Some of us do a whole lot of "mirror gazing" to see what effect we are having on this world, when in truth we need to be doing a lot more gazing into the eyes of someone other than ourselves to really determine this fact! The eyes are the window to the soul - if we escape taking in what they may reveal because we are too focused on gazing upon ourselves, we might just miss out on some pretty important stuff God intended for us. Things in this life are not meant to be learned in a vacuum. God put us together with other people because they reflect back to us more of us than we can ever see by gazing upon what WE see reflected in the mirror!
Be humble. Be gentle. Be patient. Tolerate one another in an atmosphere thick with love. Make every effort to preserve the unity the Spirit has already created, with peace binding you together. (Ephesians 4:2-3 VOICE)
I am certain we all have a little issue with "mirror gazing" on occasion - it is part of human nature to look intently at ourselves, all the while missing the impact "our selves" have had on the people around us. A perfect example of this is when we last had an argument with someone. It is not uncommon for us to spend some time "mirror gazing" either before we launch into the exchange of words, or even afterwards. What we are doing is "rehearsing" either what we will say, how we will react, or what we did say and how we reacted, perhaps with a critique of how we could have done it "better". The issue with US focusing on US in the mirror is this idea of seeing only a partial image reflected back.
When I do my hair in the morning, I like to prop the medicine cabinet door open a little bit, allowing a reflection of the back of my head into the mirror in front of me. Have you ever tried to get at that one lock of hair which seemed to be reluctant to do what you want it to do while gazing at yourself in the mirror? You move your hand what appears to be "right" or "left" and it seems to be going the opposite direction! You forget the reflection is reversed. So when you want to move toward that stray lock, you are actually moving away! Maybe this is why we shouldn't rely upon the image we "see" reflected back at us - we aren't always able to "interpret" it correctly!
As Ms. Bailey indicated, mirrors reflect the effects of life on us, but they do little to reflect the effect of our lives on others. To really get a good look at how we are "doing" in life we might just take a good look into the eyes of those we are working with, living everyday life around, and interacting with the most. What we see reflected back about ourselves is often quite revealing! The problem with the mirror is the limited dimensions it can display back to us. Human beings reflect things back in living color, with all the dimensions fully illustrated for our beholding. We might feel more "secure" with the mirror, because we don't want ALL the dimensions to be reflected back, but God didn't plan for us to only see ourselves from one or two dimensions. He operates in a pretty multi-dimensional world, looking at us from the inside out! He doesn't discount what cannot be seen, but seeks to uncover it by having it reflected back to us through the eyes of another. Just sayin!