Mimes of God

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
4408324164 37b1445f62

Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

Ephesians 5:1

At one time or another, I expect you've seen a mime. Perhaps it was on television or in a crowded square of a cosmopolitan city. It seems like every time I'm walking around in San Francisco, I come upon a mime or two. Inevitably, these mimes will be dressed in simple clothing, their faces painted white with black accents. Mimes are actors who communicate only with their bodies. They tell stories with their hands and faces. By their movements, they create impressions. If you watch an accomplished mime pretending to be in a box, pretty soon your mind begins to "see" an invisible box caging in the poor mime as it gets smaller and smaller.

According to Ephesians 5:1, you and I are to be mimes of God. The NIV translation begins, "Follow God's example . . . ." This captures the sense of the original Greek, though a more literal translation would read, "Be imitators of God." The Greek word for "imitators" is mimetes (mim-ay-tays), which is related etymologically to our word "mime." A mimetes was an actor who imitated someone else.

So, then, how are we to be mimes of God? Surely not in the sense that we are never to speak about God. But Ephesians 5:1 calls us to be imitators of God, people who live in such a way that others can see God present in our lives, even though God is not visible to the eyes. In our deeds and our words, people observing us should be able to "see" God, much as we might "see" a box surrounding a mime. (There is a difference between God and the imaginary box, of course. Though God is not visible to those who see us, he is truly there, present with us through the Spirit.)

In tomorrow's reflection we'll consider further how we are to be "mimes of God." For now, let me encourage you to reflect upon how God is visible to others through your life.

QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: Do those who observe you each day "see" God present through your life? Do your colleagues at work? How about your family members or close friends? Would those who interact with you on the street or in the grocery store see you as "miming" God?

PRAYER: Gracious God, what an amazing imperative: Be imitators of God. I find this encouraging and overwhelming. Help me to know what it means for me to imitate you (and what it doesn't mean, also).

As people observe my life, as they see my deeds and hear my words, may they sense your presence in me. May they know that, even though they cannot see you, you are real and your Spirit dwells in me. May my life honor you in all that I do no matter where I am. Amen.


Simplicity at Work

In our complicated, 21st century, high-tech, high-speed world, people have begun to crave a simpler approach to life and work. In the series Simplicity at Work, The High Calling explores simplicity in the places we work and the ways we work; and, perhaps more subtly, we want to explore simplicity at work in us through a variety of stories that reveal ways people find freedom and success when they simplify. Join us for Bible reflections, featured articles, and discussion. Invite your colleagues to do the same.

Image above by Samual John. Used with Permission. Source via Flickr.