• Ps John

Inside Out

“The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)

1 Samuel 16:1-13

We can be too quick to assess people from the outside without getting to know them on the inside.

During our first furlough (now called Home Assignment) from Papua New Guinea, a lady came to me after one of our presentations in a church and asked me about a PNG man whose photo I had shown the group. The man had a pig tusk through his nose and two rhinoceros beetle horns also sticking out from his nose. Her question was simple: “Can a man like that really be a Christian?”


I looked at the lady and I thought how, to the man (a strong Christian), the pig tusk and beetle horns were much like her makeup and earrings were to her.


In connecting with different kinds of people, it is important to distinguish between two different things: Form and Meaning. Form refers to things we experience through our physical senses of sight, sound, touch, taste and smell. Meaning is how we understand those things. The same Form can have different meanings to different people (eg. pig tusk and beetle horns in a nose). The same Meanings can be expressed in different Forms (eg. the different forms that greetings can take).


1 Samuel 16:7 says, “The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”


We can be too quick to assess people from the outside without getting to know them on the inside. God, on the other hand, looks at the heart – of others, and of ourselves.


Let’s join the psalmist in praying: “Search me, O God, and know my heart” (Ps.139:23).


God bless,


Pastor John

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