So this is what 61 looks like, I thought to myself as I caught a glimpse of my reflection in the bathroom mirror. Where had my thick, shiny chestnut-colored hair gone? When did I develop a “turkey neck”? How did all those barnacles crop up on my skin?
I need to get some hair extensions! I better start exercising and eating healthier! Isn’t there some kind of vitamin cream that will ward off age spots? I thought, feeling a bit panicky.
As the years creep up on us, we all go through anxieties about our physical appearance. However as I pondered the effects of aging on my body, God nudged me to examine what effect the years have had on my spiritual well-being, reminding me that people look at outward appearance, but God looks at the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7)
What did I see in my spiritual mirror? How had my faith weathered the decades from the time when I was “born” spiritually? Had I matured since the day I started life anew by trusting in Jesus as my Savior instead of myself?
With great thankfulness I realized that, by God’s mercy, the years had strengthened my faith. Rather than wrinkling and weakening with time and trials, my faith had smoothed out and solidified, no longer tossed about by every shifting wind of teaching. (Ephesians 4:14)
I remember when I first became a Christian I got fired up by every speaker and teacher who thumped their Bibles. I was practically a roadie for musicians like Keith Green and Mickey and Becky Moore. I rode the roller coaster of spiritual highs during corporate worship at Jesus’ events and questioned my faith when I didn’t “feel” that rush of soul adrenaline in our weekly church services.
But God has used the trials and challenges of life to define and refine my faith. He has taught me that I can find the truths and foundations of faith in His Word. I have learned that God is present in both the exhilaration and the desperation of each and every moment. Albeit, I miss the euphoria, but it’s been replaced with a Rock-solid belief in Jesus that is far more valuable and lasting.
Time really has been a lousy beautician, but the past nearly four decades have only increased faith’s beauty and value. I would love to hear what you are seeing as you look into your spiritual mirror.