TITLE: Caring Less
DATE: August 16, 2019
TEXT: 1 Samuel 16:7 - ESV - But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
My father and I were on Chicago’s Skid Row. It was 6:30 AM and men were staggering from one bar to the next. My father accurately read the disdain in my attitude. He didn’t’ correct me. He just started to explain. That fellow by the lamppost, he was a successful Doctor. The fellow in the brown suit was an artist. When I asked, ‘WHY ARE THEY HERE”. He said “Most are good men, it was that their life wasn’t. It was too hard, and this is where they ended up.
In short my father had looked and come to know the heart of those men.
To look into and transform hearts. That’s what God does. A few years ago two men were on a business trip. They had committed just about every sin they could think of. As they went to the airport, they drove by a church. Seeing they had some extra time, one man challenged: “I’ll bet you $100, you won’t go into that church and confess everything you did last night to the Pastor.”
The second fellow said, “Easy money.” Entering the Church, he found the minister. In graphic detail, he related the previous night’s escapades.
The perceptive pastor, discerning the man’s insincerity, said, “You are confessing to the wrong person. Go to the front of the church, kneel before the statue of Jesus, look into the Savior’s suffering face and say, ‘Jesus, all this you did for me, and I could care less.’”
The man went to the altar, stood in front of the crucifix, and flippantly began, “Jesus all this you did for me and I…..”
He stopped. Sermons and teachings about Jesus Who had died for him, came flooding over him. Still, he had a bet to win, so he cleared his throat and began again, “Lord Jesus, all this you did for me….”, and then he burst into tears and the Spirit rekindled a living faith within his heart. Repentance and forgiveness had been successfully preached.
Jesus’ death and resurrection, shows God places value on lives that we might consider worthless. The Lord looks beyond the wreckage produced by sin, and sees in the most hopeless transgressor, a person of great worth.
As you read Scripture, you cannot help but be amazed at the number of places and the variety of circumstances wherein the Holy Spirit successfully called people to repentance in the crucified and risen Lord.
The Lord saved the demoniac who lived among the tombs; the sinful woman at the well; the Ethiopian eunuch in his chariot; Saul on a journey to arrest and persecute, thousands who gathered at the sound of a rushing wind on Pentecost, as well as a suicidal jailer in Philippi.
The reason I share this is because, in all probability you know someone who needs to hear about the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ. If you get the opportunity, try to share the story.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, all this You have done for me, and I am most thankful. Grant me grace to share your story with others. This I ask in Your Name. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann. He along with three of his brothers perform on the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html