“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16)
Next time you’re at a supermarket checkout, notice the magazine covers. Airbrushed faces, toned bodies — ads for diets and products that promise you can look that way too. Now, there is nothing wrong with looking your best and taking care of your body. After all, it’s the temple of the Holy Spirit and you are responsible for maintaining it. But there is much more to you than clothes and a hairstyle. It’s a mistake to focus on the outside and not appreciate and cultivate the inner qualities God has given you.
The Bible says, “Beauty is [… not lasting]” (Proverbs 31:30). When God made you, He didn’t just decorate the outside; He gave you “inner beauty, the gentle, gracious kind … God delights in” (1 Peter 3:4). In fact, Paul reminds us “the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18), a gentle reminder that what Mother Nature giveth, Father Time taketh away!
The truth is, Paul is not remembered for his good looks. His enemies said, “His bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible” (2 Corinthians 10:10). But what he will be remembered for are these words: “I have fought the good fight … finished the race … kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7-8).
So, the word for today is — focus on the inward instead of the outward.
Lord, help me to focus my inner life by focusing on my worship of You, in word, song and praise. Let me use that to go out and show others the love that You have given me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.