Unlimited: Jesus Wants To Focus on Our Hearts

May 7, 2017 705

All Caution Aside

These people honour me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me (Matthew 15:8 NIV).

There’s nothing more annoying than a car that won’t start when you need it to. It happened to me recently with a car I bought that seemed a real bargain. It’s easy to paint a dodgy car up and make it look good, while not bothering to fix it on the inside, where it matters most.

Although we try and try, we’re still not the husbands, the wives, the sons, the daughters, the friends that we could be or should be.

Perhaps it’s because we focus too often on externals, such as our behaviours, rather than on what matters most. The Jewish teachers insisted on lots of ritual hand-washing. But Jesus taught that it’s not the germs from the outside, but our hearts on the inside that cause our problems:

The things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander(Matthew 15:18–19).

Jesus taught that if our hearts are right, then our behaviour will be right. That’s why the teachings of Jesus overwhelmingly focus on the heart.

God isn’t primarily interested in the externals. He cleans you from the inside out. If your heart is right with God, the rest will follow. – Eliezer Gonzalez

Eli’s Reflection: Christ’s teaching is a challenging one. Do you, like me, find it too easy to focus on externals? Why is this dangerous? If Jesus sees our hearts, what can you do to see people more as Jesus sees them?

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