I love this quote by Eleanor Roosevelt, but Jesus totally called this concept centuries before the First Lady. Because it’s true: you don’t know the true character of a person until you’ve seen their reaction to hard times. It’s easy to be full of joy when life is good or to be on your best behavior on a first date. But what about when you snub your toe or someone cuts you off in traffic? What’s your first reaction? Cuss words? Taking the Lord’s name in vain? Cursing someone? As Blake Shelton sings, “Who are you when I’m not looking?”
“A good man out the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” -Luke 6:45
According to Jesus’s sermon in this chapter, what comes out of our mouths reflects what is in our hearts (Matthew 12:33-37). Yes, sometimes we can fake being good Christians with our words, but it’s only a matter of time until our true colors show. Because it is what comes out of our mouths that defile us (Mathew 15:11). Evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, and foolishness all take root inside a man before they manifest themselves on the outside (Mark 7:20-23).
So, how can you know what’s truly inside of you? Is it good? Bad?
Turn your Bible to Luke 11:33-36. Here, Jesus teaches us about the access the eye gives to the rest of our body. If your eye is good, your whole body is also full of light. But if your eye is bad, your body is also full of darkness. It’s that concept of “you are what you eat”. What you consume with your eyes is what takes root in your mind and your heart. If you fill it with the Word of God, then His truth and His desires for your life will grow in you and yield good fruit. But, if you let your eyes wander to the shiny things of this World, soak in hours of worldly entertainment and buy into the World’s lies about how you should look and live, then your life will yield anxiety, envy, doubt, pride, and all those ugly things that defile a person.
Your hot water tests will continue to happen, whether it’s in traffic or a scary medical diagnosis. It may be minuscule or life altering. Will you pass or fail?