You can know a man if you follow his trail, if you follow long enough. By his tracks on the land the ways of a man are made plain–his kindness or his cruelty, his ignorance or his cunning, his strength of his weakness.”
–Louis L’Amour (The Key-Lock Man)
“Godliness guards the path of the blameless, but the evil are misled by sin.”
–Proverbs 13:6 (NLT)
Part of what makes a man, what makes a leader, is bearing. How does the person handle himself through life? Bearing can be described as the outward showing of the inward man. While it may be true that clothes do not make the man, yet much about the man can be seen from the way he presents himself.
Then we hear the excuse, “God looks on the heart.” That is so true, but at the same time as He does cleaning on the inside it begins to appear on the outside. Now, that doesn’t mean we go around wearing our finest all the time, but we do dress, work, speak, and present ourselves as representatives of the “King”!
Follow a man. Look at his house, see what he reads, what he watches, where he goes, what he listens to, how he spends his money, what he does for entertainment, how he takes care of his family, and I’ll tell you much about the heart of the man. It won’t take long.
I read this many years ago and have used it a couple of times, but figured it would fit well here. Next week of Thanksgiving many will have decorated their homes in falls colors and emblems of Thanksgiving, turkeys, pilgrims, pumpkin pies. Maybe in our time of decorating it might be a good time to take some things down off the walls of our minds and do some redecorating. One of the things to start with is the decoration of being thankful. The following is by Clarence W. Cranford.
“Have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel are doing in the dark, every man in his room of pictures?”
“If your mind was an art gallery in which your thoughts could become visible like pictures hanging on a wall, would you be willing for your mother to see the exhibit?
This question was asked in a college chapel service. Some of the students treated it lightly. They joked about it afterward. But some of the students knew it was no laughing matter. The pictures we carry in the mind color the rest of our lives and affect our relationships to God, the greatest art critic of all.
During exile some of the Jewish people fell into bad habits. They adorned the walls of a room in their houses with ugly idols. This they did in the dark, not permitting their friends to enter and see what they had in that room. That room became a wall between themselves and God.
The mind is our art gallery. We adorn it with many pictures, some good and some bad. Let us pray for God’s help in the selection of the pictures we imagine.”
“The husky, rusty russel of the tossels of the corn,
And the raspin’ of the tangled leaves as golden as the morn;
The stubble in the furries–kindo’ lonesome-like, but still
A-preachin’ sermuns to us of the barns they growed to fill;
The strawstack in the meddler, and the reaper in the shed;
The hosses in theyr stalls below–the clover overhead!–
O, it sets my hart a-clickin’ like the tickin’ of a clock
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder’s in the shock.”
–James Whitcomb Riley