While I was reading through Luke 16 last night, God spoke to me about my heart.
In verse 13, Jesus says, “No one can serve two masters." And then in verse 15, "What people value highly is detestable in God’s sight."
I was struck by these two statements.
I've read and heard them before, of course. But last night, as is His style in my life, God shined a light on those lines, as if they were glowing from the page of my bible, and as if I was reading them for the first time.
Listen, God knows your heart. You know this, I'm sure. But I think usually when that phrase is used, "God knows his/her heart," it's used in defense of someone's words or actions. (At least it is when I say it.) I judge and gossip and make assumptions, and then I realize how wrong I am for doing these things and I remember that only God knows a person's heart, truly, so I repent.
And I'm not trying to be a downer, here, but what about the other way around? What about those who seem to be doing everything right -- who seem to be walking on the path of righteousness, saying and doing all things holy, with blessings coming from all sides? What about those hearts? Are those people's hearts aligned with God's, or are their words and actions meant to please and appease men?
I, sadly, sometimes fall on both sides of this story: I often find myself guilty of the former and am occasionally in danger of the latter.
This is a tricky struggle for me, particularly as a creative person. I may create things that are "highly esteemed among men" (or at least among a couple of women I know of), while the heart behind these creations, and in me, is creating for God's glory, and as a form of worship and praise. But sometimes I do catch myself trying to create something to impress or please someone else, and glorifying God gets sed aside or forgotten altogether in the pursuit of "high esteem".
The key is our hearts -- are our hearts serving men, or Him? It can't be both. And God knows which it is in each moment.
I do enjoy creating and making things that are pleasing to the eye, but I always need to keep myself in check -- my heart in check -- as far as where I'm finding my worth.
Oh, and this goes for all things, obviously -- not just art, or for creative people. It's okay to enjoy and be passionate about certain things and experiences. About LIFE. God gave you the passions that you have, after all. Just don't put them before Him.
You love to travel? Good. But put God first. You love fashion? Good. Me too. But let's put God first. You're a writer? Awesome. Promote your work -- I want to read it. But put God first. You love cinema? Good. You're probably cooler than me. Put God first. You love your job? Lucky you. Put God first.
You design Christian t-shirts? Amazing! I want one. But put God first. You illustrate your faith? Me too! Let's remember to put God first. You're a Christian artist? Cool. I probably love your work. Put God first.
WHAT ABOUT YOU? Is this an area you ever struggle with? How do you remember to be faithful, and to glorify Him in all you do? ⤵︎