Charis and I were watching a football game with Chuck and of course being bombarded with the ads as well. There were two ads that continued to repeat in the same order every couple of minutes. Then it hit me.
“Charis, watch this ad. What is the guy doing?” I asked. She proceeded to tell me how he “thinks he is all cool, and doing all that rapping and talking about how good he is because of his shoes. And he got all those different colors. He doesn’t need so many pairs.”
“Do shoes make you cool?” I asked.
“No mom, but that’s all he’s talking about. ”
“Okay now watch this one.” We sat in silence watching the ad, again, but this time focused on its message even though both ads had already washed over us at least four times before. Pay attention to what you are soaking in.
“Charis do you see the difference between these two men? One is about the outside appearance. He is saying, what I wear makes me cool. It’s all about him, what he gets, what he wants. But this second ad is about a man who is giving to others. It is about him being strong and brave because he is serving others. His value is on the inside pouring out.”
Oh, the difference between sports shoes and the Marines. But in a two-minute time capsule the great war was revealed. It’s not the argument surrounding materialism vs the military. Those are secondary opinions. It is the war of shallow self focus vs a surrendered life of sacrifice. When we think we have to own, or wear, or look on the outside a certain way, to feel right on the inside, we have been deceived by our enemy. It’s that simple.
Our worth is who we are in God, to God, through God. It is the truth we possess on the inside that creates our strength, power, beauty, love. Indeed our worth.
You know this. You just unwrapped Christmas presents. Regardless of the wrapping, you judged the gift by what was IN the box. Not the paper and bows.
You are the dwelling place of the The Most High God. No pair of sneakers will substitute for, or add to, this great gift inside you. And honestly, nothing will satisfy our aching hearts like His presence. Are we seeing, and speaking, this truth to ourselves and the next generation?
Every time we turn our hearts toward heaven, every time we breathe a prayer of thanks, or ask in faith, we are strengthened to live inside out. May it be so.
“They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.” Romans 1:25