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PROVERBS 27:19 OUTWARD VS INWARD APPEARENCE!

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I would like to look at Proverbs 27:19 today.

"As water reflects a face, so a man's heart reflects the man." (NIV)

Let's look at the first half of this verse.

We can clearly see that this is talking about a physical reflection.

"Oh brother: where do I go with this?" Have any of you, (especially our female members), looked at all the magazines at the store, & read the subjects that are being talked about?

Virtually EVERY TOPIC is in regard to physical appearance! It really is a sad commentary on this country, when, (outside of money), physical appearance seems to be the only thing that matters anymore! Look at virtually everything that is advertised in the visual media! How many times do we see an average looking person in any of these ads? Not very often!

Sex sells, my Brothers & Sisters! Even some commercials about different forms of beds have nothing but the most beautiful & handsome men & women in them! Do any of us really look that good when we are in bed, or get up in the morning? (I know for myself, that I look like something out of a horror movie when I get up! Well, maybe not QUITE that bad! )

I really like Ecclesiastes 1:1-11.

The New American Standard Bible

Ecclesiastes 1
1:1
The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.
1:2
"Vanity of vanities," says the Preacher, "Vanity of vanities! All is vanity."
1:3
What advantage does man have in all his work Which he does under the sun?
1:4
A generation goes and a generation comes, But the earth remains forever.
1:5
Also, the sun rises and the sun sets; And hastening to its place it rises there {again.}
1:6
Blowing toward the south, Then turning toward the north, The wind continues swirling along; And on its circular courses the wind returns.
1:7
All the rivers flow into the sea, Yet the sea is not full. To the place where the rivers flow, There they flow again.
1:8
All things are wearisome; Man is not able to tell {it.} The eye is not satisfied with seeing, Nor is the ear filled with hearing.
1:9
That which has been is that which will be, And that which has been done is that which will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun.
1:10
Is there anything of which one might say, "See this, it is new"? Already it has existed for ages Which were before us.
1:11
There is no remembrance of earlier things; And also of the later things which will occur, There will be for them no remembrance Among those who will come later {still.} (NASB)

All of nature, which has been around much longer than we have, is shown here as, (for our limited thinking), eternal, never changing. It is the same thing with physical apperance! Outward beauty will only last for a very short while! There are only so many nip/tucks that can be done on a person!

Sad to say, but what happens when physical appearence fades? Women lose self-confidence, men's ego's are bruised, & they will divorce the woman that they married, because she is no longer the beautiful woman she once was.

But now, let's look at the second half of this verse.

When we are born again, we become new creatures! II Corinithians 5:17:

Therefore: if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come." (NIV)

When we chose to follow Christ, did our outward physical appearance change? No. But it is what is inside that has changed! We are given a new heart-one that has been washed & purified by the Blood of our Lord & Savior, Christ Jesus!

And that is just the start! Attitudes change, lifestyles change, (especially if physical healings have occured!). Our whole way of thinking has been replaced by the mind of Christ! Look at I Corinthians 2:16:

......but we have the mind of Christ." (NIV)

We have a member of our church who is, shall we say, a little bit overweight, as a member of our praise team. Now, most people would only see an overweight person up on stage. But I can tell you for a fact-he has a heart that is bigger than his whole body, when it comes to a love for the Lord! He is one of the nicest, caring people I know!

One of the two girls that I loved over the years, was just an ordinary looking girl-there was absolutly nothing that was that attractive about her. Yet she also had a trust & love for that Lord, that was a constant encouragement to me, during the time that I knew her. It truely is NOT what we look like on the outside-it IS a changed heart that truely does make a person!

Look at Galatians 5:22-23:

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, & self control. Against these, there is no law." (NIV)

As Believers, all these gifts can become, & are a part of who we are in Christ. Are any of these gifts "physical" in nature? No, my Brothers & Sisters-all these gifts are internal, & even more important, they are spiritual! They are the very qualities of who God is. And as such, the very qualities that God will exhibit through each one of us who chose to submit our wills to HIS WILL!

What are we truely seeking after today my Beloved Brothers & Sisters? That which will fade, or that which is eternal?

Let us pray.

Christ Jesus, we humble ourselves before You this day! So often, we take our salvation for granted,& this very moment we repent of that sin. We ask forgiveness for all those times, that we have sought the shallowness of physical appearance, instead of looking for that which is truely eternal. Lord Jesus, we turn to You alone, asking that those very fruits of You Spirit that are everything that You are, be made manifest in our lives this very moment. Help us not to look at the outward, but see with Your eyes, to the inward person of each person we meet. Help us to see how empty their lives are, because perhaps, they are more concerned about that which is physical, rather than that which is eternal. Use each of the Spirit's gifts that You have given each one of us to show them that there is a much better life that the physical! That they CAN truely know the inner contentment that we know, when they too are changed by the cleansing power of Your Blood. Guide us to those who need You the Most, Christ Jesus, we pray. In Your Name, & Your name alone, Lord Jesus. "

In Jesus Name!
Bill
_________________
"If my people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves & pray, & seek my face, & turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven, & will forgive their sin, & will heal their land." (II Chronicles 7:14) (NIV)
 

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