August 27 – Be Wary of Applause

“The crucible is for silver and the furnace for gold, and each is tested by the praise accorded him.” – Proverbs 27:21 (NASB)

Praise is enjoyable often sought after as a means to shape bolster our self-image and confirm that we have what we desire from others. It is a part of our natural man to desire acclimation and approval from others. Some seek it diligently and strategically and others take it as it comes and do not live for it. No matter, we each find it very difficult to perform before others without doing the self-evaluation on “how we did.” We want to be found worthwhile, capable and proficient to do our assigned tasks. We do not attain excellence every time and sometimes we flop miserably. With our proverb today is another with a similar lesson. Proverbs 27:19; “As in water face reflects face, so the heart of man reflects man.” Not only do we seek affirmation from our peers and the congregations but we seek it from ourselves. Our hearts reflect what we are. Looking for acceptance and even celebrity status is like spending too much time in front of a mirror fretting over our appearance. The looking glass will only return what we really are just as our heart reveal our true motivations.

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