Matthew 15:8 (NIV)
Glasses that allow you to read minds? Sounds great, doesn’t it and what a novel idea! Or maybe not.
That was the concept for a television show several years ago. An elderly lady found a pair of reading glasses in the back of a dresser drawer in her home. She discovered that when she put them on, she could hear what people were actually thinking while they were speaking to her. She was totally confused at first.
For example, when she put the glasses on, she heard her grandson say “Man, I hope the old gal falls down those stairs. Can’t wait to get my inheritance!” She was shocked and quickly pulled the glass off and asked “What did you say?” Her grandson replied “I said to please be careful coming down the stairs so you don’t fall.”
Thinking she had misunderstood, she put the glasses back on and glanced at her grandson’s girlfriend, only to hear her say “You old goat! Wish you would die already!”
In shock, she pulled off the glasses and said “Excuse me?” and heard the young lady say “I said that I want you to be careful, too.”
The elderly lady suddenly realized the value of the glasses: when she was wearing them, they had the ability to show her what a person was really thinking, no matter what they were saying.
It isn’t a big leap to apply that scenario to our lives today, is it. We are all guilty of saying one thing while totally thinking the opposite. No?
What about telling a friend how much we love her new dress but inside we are thinking “I would n-e-v-e-r buy something that ugly!”
Or perhaps we tell someone we will be praying for them concerning a situation but inside we think “You know, you really got what you deserved.”
Jesus dealt with people who said one thing but who were only giving “lip service” to Him. He called them hypocrites. Ouch.
In Matthew 15:8 He said “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” He knew that what we think in our minds comes directly from our hearts.
Allowing critical thoughts and judgmental opinions space in our hearts will give them permission to take up residence in our minds. In the same way, if kindness and compassion occupy our hearts, they will be a part of our lives.
I cringe as I consider those times that I said one thing and thought something totally different. What if the person could hear what I was actually thinking? How embarrassed and ashamed I would be!
My encouragement for today is to allow the Lord to create pure hearts in each of us (Psalm 51:10) and to make sure that the words we speak AND think will be pleasing to Him.
Father, I do not always serve you with my thoughts and my words. Please forgive me and help me to honor you with everything in me. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
R.A.P. it up . . .
Can you think of a time that you spoke one thing but were thinking something totally different?
Would you have been embarrassed if the person you were thinking about could actually hear those thoughts?
Memorize Matthew 15:8. Stop and consider comments before you make them to make sure you are not saying one thing but thinking another.
Matthew 15:8 (NIV) “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.”
Psalm 51:10 (NIV) “Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”
Psalm 19:14 (NIV) “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”
I Samuel 16:7 (NIV) “. . . The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Proverbs 4:23 (NIV) “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.”
(For more of Nancy Hughes' writing and information about her books, check out her blog, Encouragement from the War Room.)