The story is told of a woman who rushed to see her doctor, looking very much worried and all strung out. She said, "Doctor, take a look at me. When I woke up this morning, I looked at myself in the mirror and saw my hair all wiry and frazzled up, my skin was all wrinkled and pasty, my eyes were blood-shot and bugging out, and I had this corpse-like look on my face! What's wrong with me, Doctor?"
The doctor looked her over for a couple of minutes, then calmly said, "Well, I can tell you one thing . . . There's nothing wrong with your eyesight!"
As that joke makes clear, looking in a mirror won't correct any problems you have, but it will make it clear that there is a problem! That's exactly the point James makes in James 1:22-25:
"But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does."
As we come to the end of 2012, many will make some resolutions for the next year. The first step needs to be self-examination. Using the Word of God as a mirror will help to reveal any spiritual flaws that need to be corrected (and sometimes that mirror will reveal an ugly sight!), but the important thing is that we actually take steps to apply God's Word and change what we see.
Have you looked in the mirror lately?