Jesus was still driving home the idea that our faith and walk are about becoming like God–not to impress God! The pharisees did religious acts all the time for show. They announced their humility to the world…with pride! They made sure their giving clanged into the pots, they had a crowd close when the did a kind deed. If their was not some sort of instant gratification, then it was not worth doing–or so they thought!
Jesus was reminding the folks, that God looks at the heart. If pats on the back and instant gratification is what one seeks–then more power to them! Because, that is the only reward they will receive. But, if the goal is too be who God wanted them to be, then clearly public acknowledgments of one’s good deeds need to take a back seat. The way we give, share, study and even pray–need to reflect our heart’s desire! If one’s desire is to honor God and emulate Christ, people’s approval will not be required.
As we look at our personal walks, is our behavior designed more to please men or to please God? And, when we think about pleasing God, do we think religious acts or humble hearts are key? Jesus reminds us it is the attitude of our hearts that is the key–so, our hearts should focus upon God and His impact on our lives. If we do, then He will transform and bless us beyond measure. Help me, Lord, to focus upon You and You only!
God Bless You
Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
2 “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
5 “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7 And when you pray, do not keep on babblinglike pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you needbefore you ask him