Sundown Devotional: God Judges Goodness in the Heart
Sundown Devotional brings friends together as the sun sets on the workweek. We relax, reminisce, reflect and share inspiration from our peaceful meditation on a short Scripture passage. In this session, we focus on goodness in the heart, not only in actions. Christian or not, we will all be inspired. Welcome!
People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7 NLT
When certain individuals and groups consider us kind, responsible and generous among other virtues, they may place us on their good-people list. However, the more commendation we receive, the more likely we are to forget that while people judge our actions, God judges our hearts. We want to be good while we do good.
How good are we when we respond to offenses with an unforgiving spirit, which we can cover up behind bright, brief smiles? We sometimes offend God with our selfishness (like when we do good only to those who can return the favor). God loves and forgives us when we confess our faults. It is our responsibility to pass on His goodness by forgiving our offenders.
Is it because we are good that we discriminate against those who do not seem to love God as much as we do? Does our goodness cause us to condemn those who exhibit ungodly behavior? Condemnation, resentment and similar attitudes can grow into hate without disturbing our posture of seeming goodness. Let us not forget that we cannot be good about loving God while we hate people (1 John 4:20).
No matter how good we think we are, we do well to remember that God's thinking is not like ours (Isaiah 55:8). We will never share His ability to judge and reward others. His love will never be more accessible to us than to anyone else. We will always need the righteousness of Christ to cover our sins and make us look good to the Father.
God evaluates our hearts while people evaluate our deeds. In His scheme of things, genuine goodness is produced in a humble human heart by His Holy Spirit; and is combined with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5: 22, 23) to make us genuinely good. And the purpose of our goodness is to mirror the goodness of God, while we further represent Him in good deeds to our fellowmen.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, please let us focus on being good by Your grace, and on representing Your goodness in good deeds to others, in Jesus' name, Amen.
Ten Powerful Quotes About Good Hearts
- “Here's the thing about people with good hearts . . . They see the best in you. They always lift you up, even if that means putting their own priorities aside. . . They are willing to give so much of themselves with no expectation in return.” ―Najwa Zebian
- “To care about your outward appearance is important, but what’s more important is to have a beautiful soul.” ―Roy T. Bennett
- “Good heart leads to good work with the hands.” ―Lailah Gifty Akita
- “When you have a good heart, kindness becomes a responsibility you take up.” ―Ufuoma Apoki
- “Be sure of your heart before you speak.” ―Lisa Mangum
- “Sometimes, we may discover we helped the wrong person, but that should not be a reason to stop helping other people in need, even though we were fooled . . . Don’t let the fools spoil your good heart.”
―Nico J. Genes
- “Mad fearlessness is not courage. The only requirement for courage is a good heart.” ―Richelle E. Goodrich
- A magnetic personality doesn't necessarily indicate a good heart. ―Laura Linney
- “No ornament can make a person look beautiful if the person has a bad heart! A good heart is the finest ornament, the best makeup, the best cloth, the best jewel, the best lipstick and the best earring!” ―Mehmet Murat ildan
- “With everything in life, you have to look down deep into your heart! That fact is true with all things! If you have Jesus inside, He will give you all you need to say, and all the actions you need to do!” ―Mary Kate
More Sundown Devotionals
- Sundown Devotional: Choose to Encourage Yourself
Despair is no stranger to Christians. We sometimes lack the awareness to see God in the gloom. We may choose to give up, but we can also choose to get up from "under" to "above" the circumstances.
- Sundown Devotional: Going Home Ready and Glad
Do we long for our heavenly home? Why then do we frighten each other with so many WhatsApp texts highlighting distress and disasters? Why not send messages confirming our joy and inviting others to get ready?
Which of these facts has the greatest impact on your daily interaction with others?
© 2016 Dora Weithers