The feedback on my presentation was direct and brutally candid. “It look impressive. I do not think I could understand it though without you walking me through it. It is very dense.”
Even as I turned to look in the mirror, I knew I agreed with the comments. There was very little white space on any page. Illustrations, words, and compounded ideas competed for the reader’s attention. Even if one knew the jargon, it will unlikely that one would walk away with the key messages I had intended to put on the page. Instead of my simple to the point update, the ready was faced with too much detail, illustrations and answer to question that few were likely to ask, and the unknown. The combination looked impressive. The “but” rested in the gap between my intention and reality.
Mirrors are always problematic. On one hand, one looks for the needed confirmation only a mirror can provide. When one skips the mirror it is usually down to misplaced priorities (too busy to look) or arrogance (no need to look). The outcome is always increases the probability that one will miss the obvious. In my recent case, lots of the obvious. I found myself listening metaphorically to the Psalmist; “Are your marvelous wonders ever seen in the dark, your righteous ways noticed in the Land of No Memory?” (Psalm 88.12)
There is a harsh reality unveiled when mirrors confirm our worst fears. One can avoid the truth, yet in the end the truth remains whatever it is. Mirrors can also be a reason to celebrate. If one can muster the courage to look, one creates an opportunity to do something with truth that one finds. If everything is as intended, looking becomes the first step towards a celebration! Even if this is not the case, whatever one finds is an invitation to improve on one’s handiwork.
There are many kinds of mirrors in your life and mine. I hope I find the courage to accept the gifts they offer. Each reflection is a Divine invitation towards something more.