Mirror, mirror on the wall...

Mirror, mirror on the wall…

“For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:12-13)

Years ago I had the opportunity to visit Sudan. I was ministering in the bushes of Nimule where there was no electricity or plumbing. I did have my own cot, thank goodness. And I did have a toothbrush. For a mirror, there was a small metal plate nailed to a tree outside. I could hardly see myself in it. The reflection was dim. Make that extremely dim! That’s how it was in Bible times. They didn’t have the fancy mirrors we use today. Your neighbor knew your face better than you did.

That’s the comparison being made in the above passage. God sees us perfectly; we see Him dimly. He knows all; we know little. This is why we need faith and hope. God doesn’t need these dynamic twins, only we do. They help us to see what ordinarily can’t be seen and know what would otherwise remain unknown. As the author of Hebrews puts it:

“Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)

When that which is perfect has come, we will finally know as we are known. In other words, we will see clearly. In that day faith and hope will pass. They’ll no longer be needed. Our faith will be rewarded. Our hope will be realized. Only love will remain.

Faith and hope are great. They’re greater than anything the world has to offer. With them we accomplish amazing things. As great as faith and hope are, love is much greater. It’s more powerful. It accomplishes more. Faith may move mountains, but love moves hearts. Love also outlasts faith and hope. It’s the one thing we get to take with us into eternity. Yes, love abides forever. The Kingdom of Heaven is set upon it. Therefore, pursue love with all you’ve got. This requires abiding in Jesus. That’s where love is found. Faith and hope assures us of this.

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