Thursday, September 5, 2013

 what God looks for

But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word. 

Isaiah 66:2b

God reminds His people that He seeks hearts that seek Him. And there are three things God looks for in hearts that seek Him. These three things form the foundation of a life that God will use to demonstrate His glory.

GOD LOOKS FOR A HUMBLE HEART. The Lord knows that pride is often the fruit of selfish sin. Humility is the fruit of thinking correctly about ourselves and it comes after real worship. It is humbling to worship Almighty God. And He looks for humility, for in that attitude there is an emptying of selfishness that God can then fill with His work and wonder.

GOD LOOKS FOR A CONTRITE HEART. Contrition is the result of repentance. It is an attitude not only of sorrow or mourning over sin, but also of demonstation of change. Contrite hearts embrace the change that God brings. They are indicative of lives God transforms. When real contrition grabs us, we are dissatisfied with what we have done in sin's failure and we long for the righteousness of God to be known in and through us. And we do something about it.

GOD LOOKS FOR VISIBLE RESPECT FOR HIS WORD. The text here says God wants a heart that trembles at His Word. This is not a fear that comes from abuse. It is instead a respect for God's authority above all others, which we see exclusively in the scriptures. The heart that trembles at God's Word accepts the truly awesome (awesome often no longer means awesome these days, but in reference to God, it is the only appropriate descriptor) responsibility of obeying what God says. And it is the Word of God that by faith we believe for change so that God's work is known in us.

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