These are the things which defile a man.
It is right to have clean hands, but it is more important to have a clean heart. Some people are most punctilious about minute ceremonies, while they pay small heed to the moralities of their lives. It is the inner life that makes character. A bad heart defiles everything; it is a nest of unholy things.
A lady took a dead child’s photograph and touched it with her brush until the little one seemed to live in the picture. But in a day or two the face was covered with blotches. There was something on the paper on which the picture had been taken which worked up through the colors and spoiled it. So in many a life there are bad qualities which work up through all outside manners and refinements, and spoil the beauty.
The Syrophenician woman knew she was in the presence of One who could heal her child, and she simply would not go away till she got her plea; her importunity prevailed upon Him. We give up too easily when the answer is slow in coming.