The Joy of a Good Heart

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10 His delight is not in the strength of the horse,
nor his pleasure in the legs of a man,
11 but the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear him,
in those who hope in his steadfast love.
Psalms 147:10-11

We all know this, but it’s refreshing and encouraging to read in God’s word that He judges us by our hearts and not our physical attributes. Social media platforms and video streaming sites all treat us as people that are “inadequate and uneducated.” We don’t know the secret that they want to share with us. From hair to high-rise condos, these influencers tell us to trust them; they can tell us how to improve our lives. They focus on trying to fix our outward appearance – our bodies, cars, condos, we need them so we can have power like them. But those are deceiving messages.

7 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.”

1 Samuel 16:7

What has actual value is our hearts. In our hearts, God finds our love for Him and our determination to walk on the path of righteousness. Maybe this doesn’t happen to you, but there are times when I’m in a store or on vacation, and I know I have an encouraging word for a stranger, but by the time I think of what I should say, the moment is passed, and then I think of it! I was so close, but I missed the opportunity.

I’ve come to think of these missed opportunities as drawing water from the well of my heart. If I have not replenished my heart, it takes longer to drop my bucket down to the water level and then bring it back up – it takes too long. But if my heart is overflowing with my love for God and trust in His word, then I can quickly retrieve God’s message and pass it along to that stranger.

23 Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 See if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.

Psalm 139:23-24

So, God doesn’t consider our physical strength (the legs of man) or what we possess (the strength of the horse). Instead, God looks into our hearts to see upon what our wisdom is built, what is the source of strength, and upon what moral ground we have built our lives. Living for Jesus keeps our hearts overflowing with steadfast hope. Be joyful and let your trust in God be like that of the Psalmist who wrote:

Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.

Psalms 20:7

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