1 Samuel 15:24, 1 Samuel 16:7
When the Israelites demanded a king over the land, Samuel tried to dissuade them. When Samuel brought the situation before the Lord, God spoke to him “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king.” God leads Samuel to choose Saul as the new king of Israel. He looked the part. Samuel was handsome, and he was a head taller than everyone else. From the outward appearance, he was the perfect choice.
Saul’s reign began well, but ended poorly. Although he was able to rally the people, he was also swayed by them. He became preoccupied by their opinion of him. He disobeyed God because he was afraid of the people. Later, he grows jealous of David because the people loved him. He looked the part; it was the things on the inside that were missing. God’s next choice wasn’t someone who looked kingly, but someone who God said was “after my own heart.”
People look at outward appearances, but God looks at the heart. It can be easy to become preoccupied by our own appearance, or how we appear to others. Vanity isn’t just admiring our own beauty, it is also admiring and preoccupation with our own achievements, and how we appear to others. Much more important is how our heart appears to God. It is through spending time with God, and meditating on His ways that our heart changes, that we become like Him. Our life is a vapor; the admiration of those around us pales in importance to the approval of our God and king. We will spend eternity with Him. Today, may the cares and influence of the crowd fade, and may you be molded and shaped to the image of Jesus!