Monday, 25 July 2016

Inside out - Sunday 24th July 2016

We all make judgements based on outward appearance. It’s inevitable. Whether we are simply choosing who to sit next to on a bus, or appointing an employee, or even selecting a potential lover - we base much of our judgement on what we can see.
When God sent the prophet Samuel to anoint a new king for Israel, he instructed the old man which town and family to visit, but did not advise him on which of Jesse’s sons to choose. Samuel took one look at the eldest son, Eliab, and quickly concluded that he had found his man: a tall, dignified, mature warrior - obvious king material! But God gave Eliab the ‘thumbs down’. “You humans look on the outward appearance,” God told Samuel. “I look at the heart.”
Samuel worked through all seven sons present and God rejected them all, leaving Samuel to ask Jesse if he, by any chance, had any more sons. Jesse responded, “There’s the youngest, but he’s only a shepherd.” (Clearly not king material!)
David was brought. He was young and inexperienced, but it was his heart that God was looking at. He was the man.
When it comes to yourself - God doesn’t love you because of your skin colour, your age, your choice of clothes, your height, or your weight - of course he doesn’t. But we still follow Samuel’s error and judge other people by such things.
Next time you meet a stranger, do your best to look beyond the obvious externals and try to perceive what they are like inside. Look at them as God looks at them. You may be surprised.

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