Those who look to him are radiant with joy; their faces will never be ashamed. Psalm 34:5 CSB
Things aren’t always what they seem. When I wrote this, south Florida was holding a collective breath wondering what the hurricane passing by that night would be like. But as I looked out the window, I saw sunshine – no indication heavy rain and big wind gusts would keep us shut in tight.
It’s the same with people. We value appearances so highly. Whether it’s physical appearance or ability (think models and sports figures) or fame, money, power (think celebrities, millionaires, politicians). But this is what God told Samuel a long time ago, still true today: “People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7b NIV)
Funny how children seem to intuitively know people’s hearts and don’t give a rip about their looks. I have grandchildren who don’t know that wrinkles aren’t attractive, they just think I’m fun and love to cuddle up in my lap or bury their head in my shoulder. It’s as old as time, but I wonder, why do we get so wrapped up in what is seen?
Pretty much stems from what all the shortcomings of our world can be attributed to: we are selfish by nature. We compare ourselves and feel like we deserve more. When worth is about what we have, about where we live or who we know, about anything in this world – we will always feel short-changed.
But when worth is found in our Creator, then we discover we have all we need and more. “Instruct those who are rich in the present age not to be arrogant or to set their hope on the uncertainty of wealth, but on God, who richly provides us with all things to enjoy.” (1 Timothy 6:17 CSB)
There is freedom in getting our focus off comparison, off self. We spend so much time pressuring ourselves to be a version of what advertising says we should be, of what equates “success” – no wonder stress is a universal mental and physical health detriment.
When we release worldly standards and pursue Jesus standards, He’ll always be enough for us, He’ll always make us enough for where we are. And we’ll know, without doubt, that there is so much more to live for than all the riches of this world.
Father, set our eyes on You. All this world says is worthy pales in comparison to all You have for us now and in the life to come. Thank You for love that doesn’t compare us but encompasses us and says we are worthy because of Your Son. Help us to live this freedom and shine it to a confused world. In Jesus’ Name, Amen