This was Justin’s first post at Reflect and was originally published in February. During the month of August, Justin is taking a break and will resume publishing new posts in September.
A few months ago, I had lunch with my older brother to discuss the idea of starting this blog. Trevin has been a successful blogger for many years. I needed his advice on how to launch it and sustain it. Assuming the role of older, wiser brother he offered sound guidance and sharpened my ideas and vision. I realized I wouldn’t realistically be able to get if off the ground until early 2020 due to moving from the US to the far east and starting a new career as a full-time Army chaplain.
Well, here we are early into 2020.
I decided on the name, “Reflections,” because I wanted the blog to accomplish two goals:
First, I intend to encourage people to be reflections of God, the Imago Dei principle. I wanted to promote the truth that men and women are made in God’s image.
One of the most powerful after effects of the Gospel is that it initiates the Holy Spirit’s restorative and transforming power to the Imago Dei, so we become light to a lost and dying world. As we are sanctified through the work of the Holy Spirit after our salvation, we become conformed to the image of Jesus, the God-man. In other words, our character changes. Our desires and deepest longings change. God works in us, so we reflect Him in a more profound way to those who don’t know Him. My conversation with Trevin helped me realize the blog ought to be pastoral in nature. I want to help people become disciples and more committed disciples of Jesus.
My second goal is that I wanted to share some reflections. Primarily, I wanted my family (wife and kids) and friends to know what I was thinking or thought about certain events and experiences. American culture moves a mile a minute. It’s great when we’re in the Chick-fil-A drive through, but I’ve learned our break-neck pace is not always healthy.
I believe God wants us to slow down sometimes and really think, meditate, and consider His character and promises.
G.K. Chesterton once observed, “There is a kind of work which any man can do, but from which many men shrink, generally because it is very hard work, sometimes because they fear it will lead them whither they do not wish to go. It is called thinking.”
We need to take stock of our lives. We need to think about the bigger picture. How am I (or am I?) reflecting Christ thru my interactions with my spouse, my kids, my work colleagues, etc? Am I setting a good example for my children to follow? Am I fulfilling my purpose in life?
God says, “Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10). God orders us to reflect and consider the reality that God is God, and we are not. He does this for our good. He is actively working in our lives, lives around the world, and throughout human history. The Bible clearly demonstrates this truth, but students of history also can grasp this principle. I desire to glorify God through my reflections here.
Trevin urged me to change the name of the blog from Reflections to Reflect. He is an editor and accomplished author, so I considered it. You might even say, I reflected on it. (Lame joke I know–I’ll see myself out.) After thinking it over, I decided older, wiser bro was right on this one. Big bro for the win!
So, I invite you to join me on a journey to reflect.
I really hope this blog encourages, challenges, and strengthens you. I pray we will sojourn more carefully, purposely, and prudently.
May we obey God’s command: “Teach us to number our days carefully so that we may develop wisdom in our hearts” (Psalm 90:12).
Thanks for reading,