This week I’ve been reading Genesis 17 where God commands Abraham to be circumcised at 99 years old. That very day Abraham was circumcised as God had said to him, along with all of the men in Abraham’s household. (Genesis 17:23) Wow. That is trust. That is faith. Going through the pain of childbirth, I was rewarded with the priceless gift of a baby. What reward did Abraham have to look forward to? Nothing. Abraham believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness. That’s the reward. He gets God. He gets the gift of a clean conscience. He gets the blessing of knowing he obeyed and did the hard thing, because God told him to. Circumcision cuts away unnecessary flesh. God wants us to make no provision for our flesh, but to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives. Circumcision is painful. As Christians, God often requires us to go through hard things, but we receive the peaceful fruit of righteousness as we grow and persevere in our faith. Circumcision is permanent. And so is the Seal of the Holy Spirit. You become a new creation in Christ and no one can snatch you out of God’s hands. Circumcision is an outward symbol, but it isn’t super obvious to a random passersby, like a head covering or a long beard. Sometimes I wish that all Christians wore cross necklaces or some other outward symbol, so I could easily recognize them. This is not God’s way. God wants us to shine for Him with the hidden person of a meek and gentle spirit which in His sight is so precious. Truly, man looks at the outward appearance but God looks at the heart. He knows if your circumcision is merely outward, or whether your heart has truly changed. I’m praying for God to change me from the inside out. I want my outside and my inside to match. I want my flesh to be cut away and my inner spirit of Jesus to shine bright to a watching world. How about you? What is hindering you that needs to be cut off?