Thorns among the Barbs

Thoughts on my journey to heaven

Inner life versus Outer Appearance

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I have given some thought to this but perhaps you have or have not. As young as I could remember i could hear my parents remind me that I had to look sharp, crisply ironed clothing, and every hair in perfect order, smelling good, looking good, appearing polished. But I also remember with great joy how wonderful it was to put on that old pair of beat up jeans and the soft and gently worn sweatshirt and just be me. I feel more like myself when I am wearing comfortable clothing, and don;t have to worry about the outward appearance.

But the truth of my parents reminders is that we do judge each other on the outward- if they look polished, well dressed, smell good, look good then perhaps they are good. But the reality of the outward appearance is that it does not always match to the inward heart attitudes. Some poeple look like a million bucks, but when you spend 5 minutes talking with them you realize they have not spent time building the inner self. Or as my one friend so fondly says “the lights are on, but noone is home” inside that beautiful exterior.

Weekly I get an email from Christ Notes called Weekly Wisdom. Today’s message is “Your outer life is your reputation with people, but your inner life is your reputation with God. ” While I used the analogy of clothing and appearance, indeed how we function in public does speak of how we are developing an image or reputation with other people. And often when you hear someone;s name there is an instant thought – “Oh, she is such a giving person” or “He is a hard working man, devoted to his job” or “I don;t want to deal with her because she is impossible to work with.”

King David knew the importance of putting God first in order to maintain a good inner life. In Psalm 27:4, he wrote, One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life. David made God — and spending time in God’s presence — the one thing he wanted. For David, his inner life was more important than his outer life.

1 Peter 3:4 says that your beauty should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.

What ever the reputation, it is based on time spent and exposure to that person. And we all know that there are times when we are putting on an image that may not be true. But God sees through all of this to know who we truely are. He knows when we are truthful, working on or struggling through our character and he knows how much time we spend with God, and he knows how willing we are to work on wrestling with God for character development, disciplining our mind and body to spend time with God, and be opened to allowing him to change and mold us. I want to know that my time spent with God is like the comfort of my old jeans and sweatshirt… natural, comfortable, and I can fully be myself in his presence.

If you are looking for a weekly blessing, log onto http://www.christnotes.org/ and sign up for weekly wisdom. It has been a blessing in my life and I pray this will bless you also.

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Written by Barbara Bloom

November 9, 2009 at 12:04 PM

One Response

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  1. I only want to tell you thanks for all the great info found on your blog, even helped me with my job recently 🙂 keep it up!

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    November 18, 2009 at 1:39 PM


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