Inside Out

Charmain Hibberd
by Charmain Hibberd

Marketing Assistant, CBN Europe

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Guard you heart above all else, for it is the source of life.’ 

(Proverbs 4:23 CSB)  

The Inside World

There’s a great Disney film called Inside Out. It follows the characters (who are individual emotions like anger, sadness etc.) inside an individual and takes us on the rollercoaster journey of emotions that the person feels. It’s a beautifully simple yet incredibly insightful film and the ending will certainly make you feel all warm inside. 

It made me think about our inside worlds as humans. We spend a lot of time primping and pruning the outside of ourselves – our face, our clothing, our shoes, our hair – but do we spend as much care and time on the inside? 

Jesus was very clear when He walked the earth that our inside world was just as, if not more, important than our outside world. He even goes as far as to say that the heart is the source of our very lives (see scripture above). 

Jesus took great issue with the religious men of the day He lived in. On more than one occasion He showed them up, rebuking them for their religious parades and outwards shows of holiness, when inside their hearts were so, so far from true relationship with God. 

He detested their long prayers made in public, their loud deposits into the temple treasury and the long sleeves of their prayer shawls that they would wear to be honoured in the marketplace. He detested it all. 

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup, so that the outside of it may also become clean.  

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which appear beautiful on the outside, but inside are full of the bones of the dead and every kind of impurity. In the same way, on the outside you seem righteous to people, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.”  

(Matthew 23:25-28 CSB) 

Let’s face it, we can all ‘fake’ faith. We can all put on a ‘show’. But true faith exists in the unseen, in the quiet place, in the heart.  

Far Away Hearts

These are strong words from Jesus and you can sense that they matter a great deal to Him.  

I do believe that there was an element of righteous anger in Jesus’ words to the scribes and Pharisees, but more than that I can feel the heart of God yearning for a genuine, authentic relationship with His people. 

‘These people honour me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.’  

(Matthew 15:8 NLT) 

I don’t believe that God is interested in showy faith. I believe that it is the real, honest, raw faith that He desires from us. What use is it to bellow grand prayers in prayer meetings or preach the Gospel to a friend when our inside lives are so far from God Himself. We may neglect quiet time with Him or passionate worship yet expect our outside faith to demonstrate power. It is not the case.  

Let’s face it, we can all ‘fake’ faith. We can all put on a ‘show’. But true faith exists in the unseen, in the quiet place, in the heart.  

Do you still love the Lord? Do you still hunger for time with Him? Do you desire to sing to Him because He is good? If your faith has grown lukewarm or even cold over the years, there is no condemnation for that. God says so Himself in Romans 8:1. But there is also no reason why you cannot ask the Holy Spirit to blow on the embers of your faith and ignite a new passion for God once again. 

And remember, it is not your demonstrative outer actions that prove your faith, but rather what goes on on the inside, between you and God alone. This speaks greater volumes of faith than a whole parade of external performance.  

I want you to show love,
    not offer sacrifices.
I want you to know me
    more than I want burnt offerings. 

(Hosea 6:6 NLT) 

inside-out-secondary

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