To the Naked Eye
“Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the Lord pondereth the hearts (Proverbs 21:2).”
Trees are majestic. They give shade and cool the air from summer’s heat, some growing to be enormous specimens of God’s handiwork. One such tree in our neighborhood produced gorgeous fall foliage that was nothing short of breathtaking. But, one windy, soggy, late autumn day, the tree, dressed in its full autumnal glory, crashed to the ground for no apparent reason.
To the naked eye, this tree was perfect. As crews of men began sawing the tree and removing the debris, it became apparent that the tree had decayed from the inside out. Undoubtedly, it had suffered a wound sometime in its life that had left it vulnerable to decay. It was a wonder that the tree hadn’t fallen earlier since the decay was so deep. It was beautiful on the outside, but decayed on the inside!
The story of our lives can be written in much the same way. We can fill our lives with good works and yet suffer from spiritual decay. Christ spoke directly to the Pharisees about this, saying, “…you outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity (Matthew 23:28).” It’s possible to live a wholesome life without living a consecrated life. It’s not just about good works and appearances; it’s a matter of the heart.
Today, let’s join the Psalmist in praying, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting (Psalm 139:23-24 KJV).