This is a difficult lesson for us to learn. Much of our denominational, college and seminary structure and education has put more emphasis on what we know rather than on what we are – character. This has led to placing persons in positions of leadership (pastors, teachers, elders, deacons and others) who have knowledge or ability according to a worldly standard, but in fact, they are rejected by God because of serious character defects. The problem stems from “looking on the outward appearance” rather on the “heart”.
When Paul had to justify his ministry of reconciliation, he said, “We are not commending ourselves to you again but giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart.” (2 Corinthians 5:12). Solomon instructed his son; “Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.” (Proverbs 4:23). Again he says, “My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways.” (Proverbs 23:26).
You may be able to fool people with your “outward appearances” for a time, but God is your first line of accountability who goes right past the outward appearance to the heart. Is He finding suitable conditions that He can use you to advance His kingdom and glorify Him through the church? The difference between these two things is either rejection or a divine calling.