| Reflections, Veils, and God’s Glory
“And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being
transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory.” 2 Cor. 3.18
Reflecting or “paraphrasing” is the process of summarizing the other person’s main points in your own words and sending them back in a constructive way. Reflecting may deal with both the content of what the other person has said and the associated feelings …
Reflecting does not require that you agree with what the other person says; it simply reveals whether you comprehend another person’s thoughts and feelings. Reflecting shows that you are paying attention and you are trying to understand the other person. When others sense this, they are less likely to repeat themselves or use a loud voice to get their point across.
Taken from The Peacemaker: A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict
by Ken Sande, Updated Edition (Grand Rapids, Baker Books, 2003) p. 167-168
Food for Thought
Are your peacemaking efforts veiled attempts?
The apostle Paul indicates that the unveiled faces belong to those who are the Lord’s — Christians, believers, sons and daughters of God. As such, our unveiled faces are reflecting the Lord’s glory. Take those thoughts from 2 Corinthians and combine them with Ken’s insights regarding reflection. If we truly allow his likeness to permeate our words, thoughts and feelings, then true reflection can and is taking place between us and the other person. The veil is lifted and the Lord’s glory is in the center of the situation. There is an openness present that allows us to hear and see.
However, when our own thoughts or opinions cloud the conversation, then the reflecting is anything but true. We’re not able to accurately summarize the other person’s words, much less return them constructively. The veil is back on, and our personal glory trumps everything else for the moment. Oh, we can perform a kind of robotic reflection, parroting back their words with appropriately timed gestures or sighs, but reflecting the Lord’s glory? Forget about it.
But just what does this true reflecting look like? The best example, hands down, is Jesus. The Savior walked our sod with an unveiled face. He was constantly deferring to the Father’s will, words and timing. So much so, that it led John to write: “We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only” (John.1.14). When you saw Jesus, you saw God.
Now consider just a couple of the ways Jesus reflected God’s glory as he went about proclaiming peace. To those burdened with sin, disease or shame, the glory of the One and Only looked like mercy and grace, always inviting the least of these to take his hand and experience his love (“Come unto me…”). However, for the Pharisees and religious leaders, the One and Only’s glory was knife-edged and stern (“Woe unto you…”). It was the same Jesus, the same glory, but different reflections. Jesus was acutely aware of who was standing, sitting, strutting or weeping in front of him; he was always paying attention. If we confuse his likeness with a sterile sameness when it comes to peacemaking, the veil returns. Then the reflections look a lot like us, but nothing like him.
2008 Peacemaker Conference – Next Registration Deadline is 6/30/08!
As we look to the 2008 Peacemaker Conference, the storms of life remind us just how much we, as the church, need to be equipped to handle the storms of life and to offer light and hope to others. By standing on the Rock of Jesus Christ, we can experience “The Power of a Peacemaking Church.”
At the conference we will explore the various spheres of life touched by storms—in our homes, in our communities, cross-culturally, and in our churches—and see how God’s Word applies in each situation. Peacemaking can be a way of life, and we can each be encouraged by the wisdom of others who have weathered many storms!
Register before June 30 to secure your place at just $259 per person! Bring a group and save even more – register 4 and the 5th is free!
PeaceMeal is a weekly e-publication of Peacemaker Ministries (http://peacemaker.net). All Rights Reserved.
Miss a PeaceMeal? If you’ve missed a past issue or have the need to reference a past issue, you can access them in our PeaceMeal archives. Issues will appear for approximately one year from date of publication.
Don’t forget to pass the peace! If you found this PeaceMeal helpful, pleas forward it to friends. If you’d like to reprint PeaceMeal in your church bulletin or newsletter each week, see the guidelines at www.Peacemaker.net.
Say your piece in PeaceMeal. We are looking for peacemakers from around the world to write the Food for Thought section of a future issue of PeaceMeal. How about you? Guidelines and more information can be found at www.Peacemaker.net.