The old saying is, “You can’t judge a book by its cover.” That’s because you have to look inside of it to see what it really says. Solomon understood that: “For the ways of a man are before the eyes of the Lord, and He watches all his paths.” (Proverbs 5:21, NIV) On one hand, Solomon is stating the obvious: an omniscient, all-seeing God is aware of everything a man does, whether inside or out.
This verse reinforces the lesson Samuel learned when he was sent to anoint one of Jesse’s sons as the future king of Israel. He watched pass in review, and had some good first impressions based on their appearance. Samuel thought Eliab looked noble and therefore worthy, but the Lord had other counsel for him. In spite of Eliab’s kingly countenance, God essentially told Samuel, “It’s a nice house, but there ain’t much furniture”.
It was perhaps the Biblical equivalent of “All hat, no horse” when the Lord said THIS: “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7, NIV)
Not only does God see our outward appearance, but He alone also discerns our thoughts and motives; He watches all our paths. The obvious question here is, when the Lord looks at your heart, what does He see? What are the thoughts and intents of your heart?
Seeing the Whole Picture
Certainly He knew that David had not only greatness in him, but sin and heartache as well—and yet He still called David to be king. So it is with each of us: even though the Lord knows what we are capable of, even though He sees every hateful thought, lustful desire and selfish motive, he still says this: “as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, So shall your God rejoice over you.” (Isaiah 62:5, NKJV) He still calls us as the Church to be his Bride…
We are shallow creatures who are drawn to external things and temporary baubles. Some wedding participants can be more wrapped up in how the flowers look or what people wear than what is truly important. An earthly bride wants to look perfect; but like David it’s not how she looks outside that really matters! Beauty is only skin deep, but the the love inside her will be the foundation of their marriage. That also applies to the groom. He’s got to bring more to the wedding than a tux! It’s what they are INSIDE that will determine their relationship.
Someday, we will be a Bride standing at the altar, purified from all of our hidden transgressions, looking into the eyes of God’s everlasting love… And He says He will be REJOICING over us! At the wedding feast of the Lamb, it’s not going to be about how you look; it’s going to be more about WHO you are looking at. Know this: the Groom will be looking at you and rejoicing! If you give the Lord permission to take care of the INSIDE, the outside will be just fine.
You’re looking good: your hair is dyed,
Your makeup has been well applied.
But even with your catwalk stride,
You can run, but you can’t hide!
The Lord sees who you are, inside;
He knows your sinful, selfish pride,
The hidden hate, the times you lied!
And yet He set your sin aside,
Taking you to be his bride,
Offering love that cannot be denied.
To buy my latest book, Real People, Real Christmas: Thirty-one Days Discovering the Hidden Treasures of the Christmas Story, go here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1729034918/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
For Slaying Giants: Thirty Days with David, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Slaying-Giants-Thirty-Devotions-Ordinary/dp/172568327X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1535814431&sr=8-1&keywords=Slaying+Giants%3A+Thirty+Days+With+David
To buy my book, Beggar’s Bread, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Beggars-Bread-Devotions-Ordinary-Guy/dp/1535457392/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1473336800&sr=8-1&keywords=Beggar%27s+Bread