Mark 12:41-13:2

What impresses me?

There are things we look at and evaluate, and we conclude they’re great and impressive.  It could be some giant feat of man, or some trait or ability someone has.  We all want to be impressive.  I do!  I want to be recognized and applauded, and hear, “What would we do without you?”  It makes me feel good.  I look inside, and I find myself impressed with my own talents and abilities.

2008.05.18 Songs
Hosanna – Paul Baloche
Fire Fall Down – Hillsong United
I Surrender All

While the talents and abilities I have are good, I have to ask myself: is that what I’m really all about?  I have to pause and evaluate the criteria I use to evaluate myself and others.  The things I like about myself or consider impressive might actually have very little to do with “what I’m really about.”  When I face the reality about myself, those abilities and likes aren’t nearly as “impressive” as my sinfulness and my capacity to sin.

I used to have issues with anger.  I would burn inside when things set me off.  I knew the insults spoken in the privacy of my thoughts when my oversized ego was nicked.  And even when those didn’t manifest themselves on the outside, I also acknowledge there have been many safeguards that prevented my anger from spilling out and hurting people.  There were even times in my life when these safeguards didn’t prevent my anger from erupting.  Through it all, I’m learning to control my anger, and I’ve received a lot of God-provided grace and healing.  So, when placed side by side with this part of my past, my ability to teach or speak or lead worship doesn’t seem like much at all.

The widow gave out of her poverty an amount unimpressive in the eyes of man.  But in the eyes of God, her humility and heart of surrendering what little she had far outweighed the piles of money or enormous temple stones the rest of the world saw.  If who I am on the inside is what makes a stronger “impression” to God, then that’s what I need to prioritize and deal with.


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