Wednesday, May 22, 2013

On the Outside

Hello again!  It's Wednesday and our Bible character to focus on is...

Esther - "Pleasing my King as I seek to serve Him"

One of the first things that comes to mind when I think of Esther is the fact that along with the sweet spirit she must have displayed, she also must have been especially beautiful.  Now I am definitely NOT in that category myself, and during some phases of my life I haven't really felt it worthwhile to give much thought to how I looked and dressed.  I see that often in the teens of today and sometimes in stay at home Moms or gals that are overweight, as well.  The argument goes something like this...

Well, no one really sees me except the kids (or dog, or classmates) and they don't care.  Besides, the Bible says that God looks on the heart, so if I love Jesus it shouldn't matter how I look.

True, the Bible does say that God looks on the heart, and he does tell us later through his Word that a meek and quiet spirit is a thing of beauty, even more than fancy clothes and gold and pearls.  But do you remember the first part of the verse that was quoted above?  "Man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart." (I Samuel 16:7) Whether we like it or not, people do notice what we look like!  And when God finally showed Samuel the one He had chosen, he was ruddy, had a beautiful countenance, and was handsome (I Sam. 16:12).  Like David, Esther was beautiful inside and out, and the church -- made spotless by Christ -- is known as a bride adorned for her husband.  Even our heavenly apparel is mentioned as white robes of righteousness.  Hmmm... how does that translate into real life and perhaps not-so-beautiful you and me?

I was blessed to be able to add some clothes to my wardrobe this year, but I don't always have the money to do that.  So am I doing what I can in this area?  Is my hair neat and clean, my makeup natural, and are my clothes clean, modest, and free from wrinkles and tears?  Do I make an effort to look presentable when my husband comes through the door?  Am I modeling a good example for my children and any younger women that I am discipling?  Showing them that Christ is better -- even by the way I dress?

As I was writing this post I noticed a few things I need to be more consistent with, and my mind can come up with a few more... like removing clothes from the dryer and folding or hanging them promptly to reduce wrinkles, standing tall rather than slouching, drinking more water to improve my complexion, and not "grazing" when I am bored or stressed. : )

How about you?  Are there any areas that you could improve about yourself for that one especially special man looking on your outward appearance?  What about for others you may come in contact with?  Just think, precious friends, what a testimony for Christ we can be to those around us when we are neat, modest, and well-kept.

Let's plan to be a blessing today -- inside and out!!

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