True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less.
– C.S. Lewis
Two of our sons love to hike together in the wilderness of Washington and Idaho at least once a year.
Our eldest son Erik is an avid photographer and takes breathtaking pictures of the scenery surrounding them on their hikes.
This summer they trekked into the wilderness area known as the Seven Devils, named for the series of jagged crags that jut against the skyline. The main trail loops the mountains, but it’s possible to take a side trip down into one of the alpine lakes in the area.
Erik took some pictures of one of the lakes and showed them to me recently. The lake’s surface was smooth and glassy. It reflected the foliage and rocks so perfectly the picture looked nearly identical when turned upside down.
It occurred to me later that I hadn’t really noticed the lake itself, because the view was dominated by the mirror image it reflected. No turmoil roiled the water; no waves disturbed the image it was projecting.
It’s just the image we want to give others. We want to keep it smooth on the surface. So we don’t cause any waves; we hide the rocks and muck on the bottom where no one can see them.
Just keep projecting Jesus.
Except for one thing: water doesn’t project; it reflects.
What we are can’t be hidden. Peace can’t be conjured up. It has to come from a deep work of the Holy Spirit. It begins with honesty and openness before God, surrendering to His lordship. Brokenness is the storm that roils the water and allows Him to still the waves by His power.
He knows us. He understands our sincere desire to give Him glory. The more we can learn to keep our eyes on Him, the less we will be thinking about ourselves. The less we think about ourselves, the calmer our hearts will be. The more we live in that stillness, the more others will see of Him.