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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Having The Right Attitudes for Life

In review of 1 Samuel 16:7 it 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.” (1 Samuel 16:7 NIV)
 
Bottom Line:
The Lord does not look at things the we do. People judge by appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.

What this means to me:
The Lord doesn’t look at things the way I do. I tend to judge more by appearance, but the Lord looks more intently at a man’s thoughts and intentions - his heart.

In God’s eyes, why I do something is far more important than what I do.  Today I look at right attitudes for my quiet times, however, it is also a reminder for having the right attitudes for anything that I do.

I have learned and come to value a routine quiet time with the Lord. It helps me grow spiritually and provides a frequent relationship with my Lord where I can meet and talk with him. I’m reminded this morning that this special time must start with the proper attitudes.

On one occasion God told Samuel, “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 NIV). It is quite possible to do the right thing but with the wrong attitude.

As I meet with God in my quiet time, I should think through and have the following attitudes:

Expectancy: I should come before God with anticipation and eagerness. I should expect to have a good time of fellowship with him and receive a blessing from our time together. That was what David expected: “You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you” (Psalm 63:1).

Reverence: Not rushing into God’s presence, but rather preparing my heart by being still before him and letting the quietness clear away the thoughts of the world. The prophet Habakkuk said: “The Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him” (Habakkuk 2:20). Coming into the presence of the Lord is not like going to a football game or some other form of entertainment.

Alertness: Be wide-awake. I’m meeting with the Creator, the Maker of Heaven and Earth, the Redeemer of men. I need to be thoroughly rested and alert. The best preparation for a quiet time in the morning begins the night before. I need to get to bed early enough so that I will be in good shape to meet God in the morning; God deserves my full attention.

Willingness to obey: I shouldn’t come into my quiet time to choose what I will do or not do but with the purpose of doing anything and everything that God wants me to do. Jesus said, “Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own” (John 7:17). I come to meet the Lord having already chosen to do his will, no matter what.

In summary, the Lord doesn’t look at things the way I do. I tend to judge more by appearance, but the Lord looks more intently at a man’s thoughts and intentions - his heart. I’m glad God that you're not one that can be fooled. You know exactly what’s on my heart, you see through any outward appearances. You are looking for what’s really on my heart.  Though your word this morning and prompting by the Holy Spirit, I’m being reminded of my intentions and why I am doing something. Given that God looks at things differently, looking at my thought and intentions, my quiet times with him should have meaning and not just going through a check list. In everyday life, while my outward appearance may reflect a humbleness and willingness to serve, my inward reasons may still be for selfish reasons. I really need to consider my true motivations for wanting to do something. It should be in service to him, not for my own glory or benefit or to make myself look good (raise myself up.) Today, I need to really examine my intentions. My heart should be that I do things not to raise myself up, but rather to earnestly serve him and others.  My inner attitude should be to serve and to learn, instead of trying to make myself look more important or valuable or highly esteemed by others.

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