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Becoming as still as the surface of a lake... (Photo by Michael Clark)

Becoming as still as the surface of a lake…
(Photo by Michael Clark)

Oswald Chambers wrote,

The true character of the loveliness that speaks for God is always unnoticed by the one possessing that quality. Conscious influence is prideful and unchristian. If I wonder if I am being of any use to God, I instantly lose the beauty and the freshness of the touch of the Lord. “He who believes in Me…out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” (John 7:38). And if I examine the outflow, I lose the touch of the Lord.

Who are the people who have influenced us most? Certainly not the ones who thought they did, but those who did not have even the slightest idea that they were influencing us. In the Christian life, godly influence is never conscious of itself. If we are conscious of our influence, it ceases to have the genuine loveliness which is characteristic of the touch of Jesus. We always know when Jesus is at work because He produces in the commonplace something that is inspiring. (http://utmost.org/the-ministry-of-the-unnoticed/)

This is so true. We have found over the years that God best used us to impact others when we had no clue He was doing so. As soon as we put our mind to “doing great things for God,” He is not interested for as Jesus told the disciples, “Apart from me you can co nothing.” He taught them that if they simply rest and abide in Him, that they would eventually bring forth much fruit. But if we seek to make spiritual fruit for Him, all we will make is rotten apples. Likewise, those who think they are wise or beautiful are not! Conceit is ugly, but humility is something beautiful to behold and God takes notice. “Humble yourself in the eyes of the Lord and He will lift you up.” In Psalms we read,

Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God shines forth. (Psalms 50:2 RSVA)

True beauty is found in those from whom our Father shines forth, not by our fleshly human efforts.

Imagine if fallen man and woman said about those things they had done that they were “very good.” What would we think about such “proud” people? 😉 We who have eaten from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, alas, are no longer able to see the truly good things which God has made or is doing because we are so impressed with our own doing and are suspect of those who do not do as we do. Looking at others, we have the fatal tendency to automatically search for the evil behind everything. This is so sad! Paul wrote,

Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled. (Titus 1:15 KJ2000)

You have heard the saying, “Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.” Someone who really loves sees the beauty in the one who is loved, not their flaws. God who is the only one who is truly good (cf. Mt 19:17) can see the beauty in all that He has created. God who is love created what He loves and whom He loves. LOVE both changes the lover and the loved one from the inside out unless that LOVER is God who is already perfect in love and thus never changes. John wrote,

No man has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. (1 John 4:12 RSVA)

We are perfected as we abide in His love for one another and we will see His beauty in those whom we love with His love.

And this commandment we have from him, that he who loves God should love his brother also. (1 John 4:21 RSVA)

T. Austin-Sparks wrote,

“…glory is God’s nature. And a state of glory is a state which corresponds to God’s nature. Glory, therefore, is the Divine nature in expression. If you have Divine love in perfection, you have glory. If there is a state of love, Divine love, among the Lord’s people, then it’s glory. Not necessarily something like a blaze of light which you see, but which you sense. You sense it.“ (http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/004310.html)

Dear saints, we are only made perfect in God’s love. If we are to show forth His glory we must be conduits of His love for those around us. When you meet a person filled with His love you can sense it and they are a sweet smelling savor to Him.

Striving to do “good works” for God will not perfect us in His eyes for only those things done in and by His Son are acceptable to Him. How can we ever hear our Father’s voice if we are so full of our own thoughts? How can we ever do the works we see our Father doing if our whole view of the world is filled with “our vision” and what we can “do for God”?  As His people all we can do is rest in Him and let His love flow through us. If we do, soon His love will compel us to do His will for those in need, not by striving but by loving. Remember, a labor of love is no labor at all.