Matthew 15:8 – This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far away from me. (NIV)
Isaiah 29:13 – The Lord says: "These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me." (NIV)
The other morning, my three-year-old daughter said something that, to her, was so simple, but which was truly quite profound. As she lay in bed with her mother, out of the blue, she said, "You know, mommy, I put carpet in my heart for Jesus to walk on."
I think that is why Jesus, referring to children, said that "the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." (Matthew 19:14) But it made me begin to evaluate the condition of my own heart, and to wonder if Jesus had a comfortable place to walk on.
I imagine Jesus had much sadness in His heart, as He quoted today's verse from Isaiah. The people were honouring Him with their words, but their words were meaningless, because their hearts were not rightly prepared and conditioned for Him.
As a culture, we are always ready and anxious to roll out the red carpet for those we deem to be important or worthy, whether it be actors, musicians, or political leaders. And, while we cannot literally roll out the carpet for our Lord, we can put the carpet in our hearts, by filling our hearts with those things that are noble, good, righteous, and true. We can make sure to include Him in our daily lives through the study of His Word, and through personal conversations with Him. By doing these things, we can make way for the most important person of all.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, we lay down a carpet in Your path, and proclaim this day, "Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!" May our hearts be a proper dwelling place for You, and may they be filled with all good and blessed things. Amen.