It is very easy to change your clothes to appear different. Many people have clothing for different events and situations. We have our work clothing, our casual clothing, our dress clothing, etc. But changing your clothing does not change you. It only changes your appearance to make you more comfortable in your environment, to help you blend in, to keep you hot/cool, or to follow some dress code requirement at work or school.
In Joel we read the need to change your life. You cannot simply change the outer appearance and think you have accomplished what God was after. God wants your heart. God wants you to have a pure heart. You can easily change your clothing and attend church and think you’ve done what was required of you. Yet your heart could be without change—the outside was changed but the inside remained the same.
Today is the day to look deep within and ask yourself if there has been a change. Have you just changed clothing? Have you simply sought a “Christian” radio station and changed your appearance? Have you started to attend church every Sunday so you can say you went to church? Or have you changed? Do you see something different about yourself? Are you more joyful? Are you more hopeful? Are you more helpful? Are you nicer? Do you act with more compassion? Are you after truth? If you aren’t seeing one bit of change, chances are you have just changed your clothes.
“Change your life, not just your clothes.
Come back to God, your God.
And here’s why: God is kind and merciful.
He takes a deep breath, puts up with a lot,
This most patient God, extravagant in love,
always ready to cancel catastrophe.”
-Joel 2:13 [MSG]
Every believer has their own relationship with God, a relationship which can be very different from another believer. Some people, like well-known Brother Lawrence, spend the day talking to God, even while washing the dishes. Then there are other believers who will admit that speaking with God, inquiring of His will for their lives, has not been happening.
In 1 Samuel 13:14, it states that God sought a man after His own heart. Acts 13:22 agrees that David was a man after God’s heart. In being a man after God’s heart, I noticed something David did often. What pops out while reading Scripture is a statement I see numerous times (1 Samuel 30, 2 Samuel 2, 2 Samuel 5, 2 Samuel 12, 1 Chronicles 14, etc.). It simply says that David “inquired of the Lord.”
Inquiring of the Lord isn’t a difficult task. David was considering going into battle, but first he checked to see what God desired. This inquiring of God’s will is something we can do as well. Giving God time, seeking His will in prayer, we can do anywhere and at anytime. If the Lord is to be first place in our lives, there is an investment that we need to make as believers. Inquire of the Lord– it’s an invitation to allow Him to move through your life in some amazing ways!
“He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.” – Colossians 1:17-18 [NASB]