The misconception prevails that the external appearance of holy conduct holds the most significance. However, this emphasis on outward holiness often leads to a double life—a hypocrisy where despite appearing righteous, one fails to genuinely connect with God. Ultimately, this path leads to a disheartening outcome where God ultimately says depart from me worker of iniquity I never knew you (Matthew 7:23).
Yet, God's way is much simpler: prioritize your inner self, and the outward will naturally reflect this. Instead of solely emphasizing outward actions, tend to your soul by surrendering your whole being to God. Allow the Holy Spirit and God's teachings to guide and empower you. As your inner self thrives and aligns with God, your external actions will naturally mirror this prosperity.
OUR SOULS MATTER TO GOD
3 John 2 (NKJV)
Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.
Soul is the Greek Word psychē (SOOK-EH):
inner self, Inner life, heart, mind
YOUR BODY AND SOUL DANCE IN UNISON; THE RHYTHM OF YOUR WELL-BEING ECHOES FROM WITHIN TO THE OUTSIDE
WE HAVE A PART TO PLAY IN SOUL CARE
Paul is talking to Timothy but this pertains to all Christians...
2 Timothy 2:21–22 (ESV)
Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work. 22 So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.
Cleanse here means exactly what it says - clean out, cleanse out, purge
GOD HAS SENT HELP AS WELL
2 Peter 1:3–10 (ESV)
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. 5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. 10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall.
The Message Translation says...
2 Peter 1:3–10 (MSG)
Everything that goes into a life of pleasing God has been miraculously given to us by getting to know, personally and intimately, the One who invited us to God. The best invitation we ever received! We were also given absolutely terrific promises to pass on to you—your tickets to participation in the life of God after you turned your back on a world corrupted by lust.
So don’t lose a minute in building on what you’ve been given, complementing your basic faith with good character, spiritual understanding, alert discipline, passionate patience, reverent wonder, warm friendliness, and generous love, each dimension fitting into and developing the others. With these qualities active and growing in your lives, no grass will grow under your feet, no day will pass without its reward as you mature in your experience of our Master Jesus. Without these qualities you can’t see what’s right before you, oblivious that your old sinful life has been wiped off the books. So, friends, confirm God’s invitation to you, his choice of you. Don’t put it off; do it now. Do this, and you’ll have your life on a firm footing
A HEALTHY VESSEL COMES FROM A SAVED AND SUBMITTED HEART. A SANCTIFIED SOUL AND A CONTROLLED PROPHETIC TONGUE.
Proverbs 12:25 (NLT)
Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up.
Jesus gives us the an answer for the fear, worry and anxiety in...
Matthew 11:28-30 (NLT)
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.