A couple of years ago, Cari and I went to the Grand Canyon on our way back from VEGAS!!!! If you’ve ever been there, it’s quite a spectacle. It’s almost like your eyes can’t quite capture what all you’re looking at. There’s too much information for the ol retinas to digest.
We came across the Desert View Watchtower and read about the artists in the late1700s who would make masterful paintings of the Grand Canyon. They used BLACK MIRRORS called “Reflectoscopes.”
They were originally made of polished black Onyx. The historical marker said that “strong light tends to wash out color…by framing a single view and emphasizing colors and lines, the view through the Reflectoscope makes the overpowering immensity of the Grand Canyon more comprehensible.”
So imagine you face away from the canyon and look into this black mirror and see over your shoulder what is there, but simplified, within the boundaries of the edge of the black mirror. Back in art class, we’d call this monochromatic, which simplifies the subject matter.
Eli, my 8-year-old son, is my Black Mirror. If any of you are parents, you know what I mean by this. Kids tend to be be “spittin images” of their parents. It’s like peering into a simplified image of ourselves. Eli may do something outlandish (thinking he’s getting away with it) and as I’m getting onto him about it, I feel the tap on my shoulder by the Holy Spirit saying, “You know you’re just like that, Mikey?” And instantly I see myself in the simplicity of what God has been trying to show me.
Who is your Reflectoscope?
This week you may have seen HUGE political swings at the state of our nation, about racism, about Covid-19, who is to blame, is there some kind of conspiracy? The world seems to be pulling apart at the seams. It’s too complex. People may be shaming you if you don’t jump onto their bandwagon…and maybe you’re not jumping on a bandwagon because you don’t have all the facts yet. We don’t exactly know what we’re looking at sometimes when situations are so complex.
In times like these, the best thing we can do is pull out our Reflectoscopes and say, “Lord, what am I looking at here?” His word tends to SIMPLIFY the equation. Scripture is the best Black Mirror.
Acts 2:46 So continuing daily together in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart…
Basically, don’t stop meeting together because the Body of Christ is also a great Black Mirror. These people, led by the Holy Spirit, simplify the equations in our lives as we unfold our hearts in vulnerability. God uses them to help us see what we are looking at when it seems too complex. But the part of the verse I want us to focus on is this phrase…
they ate their food with Simplicity of Heart…I believe this means that while we need to understand the current events of our nation, we then need to RELEASE the outcomes into God’s hands. This takes serious focus. Do we need to freak out over Covid-19? You can if you want to, but it’s counterproductive. Simplicity means we take a step back and take a deep breath, knowing we have no control over certain situations. It means we relinquish control, and we TRUST God to be God.
If you feel overwhelmed by the complexity of life right now, wherever you are…take a look through the view of the Reflectoscope which is said to “make the overpowering immensity of [a] Grand Canyon more comprehensible.”
WT Wesley Director