We can be 'outside-in' people. If things pass the 'eye-test' then we will stick around and maybe we will see what is inside. We judge books by their cover. I'm afraid that many of us would have taken one look at the outside of John the Baptist and we would have written him off as a nut. Read Mark 1:6:
His clothes were woven from coarse camel hair, and he wore a leather belt around his waist. For food he ate locusts and wild honey.
3 Quick Observations:
1. John's message was a message that focused on the inside first. Repent and Confess. That process begins on the inside of a person and then affects the outside. John's outside was not his focus because our outside was not his focus. Jesus spoke to folks several times about this idea too...basically telling people that they focused too much on cleaning up the physical that they didn't even bother to work on the inside. Let's be inside-out people. Let's allow our Great God to change our inside...then we can follow Him in such a way that our outside will become exactly what He wants it to be and exactly what we need it to be.
2. John was not afforded comforts. We would call him either extreme or a minimalist. I don't read anywhere that he griped about it. It did not have any effect on his attitude or performance. On your list of needs, how high is 'being comfortable'? I think that it is too high for most of us...John put his mission way above his comforts. We should as well. What can you do today to focus more on God's Mission than on your comfort?
3. The Power of John's preaching was not tied to popular looks or trendy speeches. It reminds me of Paul's words in 1 Corinthians 2:2-5 'For I decided that while I was with you I would forget everything except Jesus Christ, the one who was crucified. I came to you in weakness—timid and trembling. And my message and my preaching were very plain. Rather than using clever and persuasive speeches, I relied only on the power of the Holy Spirit. I did this so you would trust not in human wisdom but in the power of God.'
Rather than rely on some special look or some emotional stirring...what if we relied upon The Power of God's Spirit and The Power of God's Word to work through us as we share The Gospel and share our Testimony?