When I was a young kid at Thomas Sumter Academy, I didn't want to look neat for class. I realize this sounds weird, but I would mess up my hair and untuck my shirt before walking into school every day. I'm not sure if other boys were that way or not. It was just one of those things I did that I'm not able to explain.
I remember the day it happened. There in the boys restroom I stood looking at the mirror. I was 12 years old. As I saw my reflection, a new thought hit me: "This is dumb. I should just tuck in my shirt, brush my hair, and try to look better." It was like a light bulb turned on. From that moment on, I tried my best to look good. I suppose I was beginning to mature some.
Our external appearance matters. Most, if not all, of us want to be looking good. That is important.
But looking good on the inside also matters. Actually, it matters much more. To God, it's of great significance.
People see our outside. God sees the inside. Beneath the surface is where His gaze is set. I Samuel 16:7 teaches us "People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."
The neat thing is God can help us look good inside.
He can clean our heart.
He can purify our mind.
He can make us just right.
David understood this well. In Psalm 51:7, he stated "Cleanse me, and I will be clean. Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow." His desire was to have his heart and mind in the proper condition.
Part of my growing up was discovering the importance of looking the best I can with what I have. And that does matter. Let's do take care of ourselves and consider our appearance.
But we grow up spiritually when we put even more emphasis on our heart and mind being clean and right. Let's fill up our lives with scripture, prayer, worship, and God's Holy Spirit. When we allow Him free access to our inner world, He will clean us up and have us looking good in the area that matters most.