Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Choose to Glorify God

Here it is…the whole point. The main thing. The ultimate goal.

To God be the glory.

I’m going to start with a confession… I didn’t plan out this whole series before I started writing it. In school, I never was too good about outlining my paper before I wrote it. This series grew from a jumble of thoughts I’ve had over the last several months.

And here’s why I want you to know that… I didn’t plan or know about the link between the problems of our glorification of busyness and our lack of opportunity to glorify God when I started this series. Now I see it clearly. Our glorification of busyness is what keeps us from serving and glorifying God. (Tweet this.)

A recap of how we got here

The Glorification of Busy—We are a busy society - no one’s going to deny that. But we’ve moved past being busy. We now glorify it. To busyness be the glory.

Make Choices, Not Excuses—The excuses we make now keep us from living in the moment God has designed for us…Make an excuse or make a change. It's your choice.

Choose Not to Stress—The whole God-thing isn’t about plans, control, and to-do lists. Those things lead to stress. The whole God-thing is about relationship; a relationship built on faith, trust, freedom, and love.

Choose to Enjoy Life—Life is hard. Bad stuff happens. We can’t control every situation. We can’t manipulate away every negative outcome. But, we can choose not to gripe…We can choose to trust God. We can choose to recognize He is in control. We can choose to find joy.

Choose to Serve God—Serving God is a lifestyle – an attitude that permeates everything we do. We can’t separate it from our homes, jobs, or community involvement. It can’t be another item on a checklist that we check off when completed.

Choose to Glorify God

Author friend Jake Pendleton posted a thought on his Facebook page a few months ago that became part of my scattered notes on this subject. “I don't know about y'all, but I've kinda been feeling lately like my life has been just bumbling around, day to day, not really focused on a goal--or an objective, if you will--that looked beyond each day itself. So starting this month, I’m going to do my best to wake up each morning and ask God to help me glorify Him as my objective for the day. How about you? I think glorifying God is the biggest responsibility we have as followers of Christ. It’s one of those situations where if we accomplish it, it covers all the other things we strive to do in order to walk holy. If we make a conscious effort to bring glory to God each day, how can we go wrong?”

Wise words, huh?

“Glorify God” can become a Christianese cliché if we don’t have practical ways to apply it. I love Jake’s first suggestion – pray each day that an opportunity will present itself in which to glorify God. Then watch and act when the opportunity comes. It’s kind of like the prayer I suggested a couple of weeks ago, “God, what do You want me to do today?” Here’s some other suggestions…

Glorify God by Serving Others

“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). Ties in with serving God, doesn’t it? The effect of our choice to serve God is that God is glorified.

Glorify God by Decreasing Self

“He must become greater; I must become less” (John 3:30). John the Baptist had it figured out. As long as our busy actions bring us glory, then glory isn’t going to God. Even Jesus didn’t glorify Himself. Instead He said, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me” (John 8:54).

Glorify God through Persecution

“Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, ‘Follow me!’” (John 21:19). Peter did follow; his life ended as a crucified martyr. Not a pleasant ending and yet we still learn from it that our persecution brings glory to God.

Glorify God through Unity

“So that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:6). Watching a fight between two people who are supposed to love each other can be a little awkward, can’t it? Yet, Christians do it all the time even though the world should recognize us for our love. Global Christianity has a lot of differences – worship styles, doctrinal differences, cultural applications, and the list goes on. We cling to some things – like Jesus’ death and resurrection – until our last breath is gone. We need to grant a little grace in other things – like the kind of clothes we should wear or how end times events will play out. Then, our unity brings glory to God.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this Busy Life series. Let’s all make choices to take the glory out of being busy and put it where it belongs…on God.

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