Scripture: Proverbs 21 (focus on 3)
Observation: God is most concerned with what’s going on inside our hearts and lives, not just what we portray on the outside. He wants us to do what is right and just instead of offering him sacrifices out of obligation.
Application: Did you ever read that children’s book about the chameleon, the lizard-like animal that could change according to his surroundings? He could become whatever the environment required – green like a leaf, brown like dirt, black to absorb heat, and light gray in other climates. He was able to respond to outside, external factors by fitting right in.
How often do we try and act like chameleons in our own lives?
I know I do. So often, I become what I need to become to fit in, to protect myself, to distinguish myself, to disguise my true self. And unfortunately, this chameleon-like quality spills over into my relationship with God. I can become more concerned about what I’m doing for him rather than simply becoming more like him, from the inside out.
The writer of Proverbs warns against this very thing:
“The Lord is more pleased when we do what is right and just than when we offer him sacrifices.” (v. 3)
God focuses on what’s happening inside our hearts, not just on the outside of our lives.
The Message puts it like this:
“Clean living before God and justice with our neighbors means far more to God than religious performance.”
God isn’t interested in our performance; he’s interested in our pure, loving devotion to him.
He doesn’t need us to “do” to fit in; he wants us to “become” to be more like him.
What are you trying to do for God right now, out of obligation and not pure devotion? What has become routine, rote, and religious in your life? Offer it to God today, and ask him to set your heart purely and completely on him.
Prayer: God, thank you for letting me come to you just as I am, for the ability to rest securely in your love. I pray my heart will become more like yours, less focused on performance and more focused on complete transformation. Amen.