(The )Church at its worst can be a critical changing room mirror, unkindly unflattering and increasing our shame and dysmorphia.
At its utter worst, it can be a terrifying House of Mirrors, increasing shadows and distorting God’s image (and that of ourselves) into a horror movie monster.
(The )Church at its best reflects God’s image purely, accurately and favourably, refracting and transmitting the Godhead’s loving radiance like a lighthouse beacon.
At its utter best, it can show us in a light so generous, making the most of our hitherto hidden potential, that it can only be reflecting mercy.
Are we helping to bless and keep people? Are we helping God’s face shine upon them and being gracious to them?*
If not, why are we saying we want that to happen to them?
If not, are we then lying to ourselves?
We can mirror God to the world.
What are we reflecting?
*Numbers 6 v 24-26, words used as a traditional Christian blessing (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Num.6.24-Num.6.26)