When I was a young man I developed a habit of talking to myself in the mirror. It was a ‘thing’ for a while, lots of self-help books and shows. The trend became a running joke on a popular television show when a character played by Al Franken looked in the mirror and said, “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me.” Like most good satire, it makes us laugh (or cringe) at ourselves. But what makes satire good is that there is an underlying truth which is taken to an extreme.
I really do believe that it is important to start out the day reminding the person in the mirror that ‘you can do this’, whatever the ‘this’ is that the day holds. For a child of God, the beginning of a successful day happens in self-talk which reminds the person in the mirror that you are capable of being loved and that you are capable of showing love.
A ‘successful’ day for a child of God is one in which we know and show God’s love. Start each day reminding the person in the mirror that this much you can do.
On those days when you are feeling unworthy, guilty, shamed, inadequate, lonely; on those days when you are feeling in control, happy, self-assured, worthy, together; look into that mirror and tell that person God’s daily reminder: “You are the beloved.” Say it out loud: ‘You. Are. The. Belove-ed.’ Three times. Now, brush your teeth.
““You are the Beloved,” and I hope that you can hear these words as spoken to you with all the tenderness and force that love can hold… Every time you listen with great attentiveness to the voice that calls you the Beloved, you will discover within yourself a desire to hear that voice longer and more deeply. It is like discovering a well in the desert. Once you have touched wet ground, you want to dig deeper.”
Life of the Beloved: Spiritual Living in a Secular World, by Henri Nouwen (source: inward/outward.org/January 13, 2020)