Made for God’s Glory

When I was in my early 20s, shortly after graduating college, I was searching for the “perfect” job. I was so worried that I would end up in the wrong position and waste my gifts and my experience. Considering my degree was a BA in Theatre & Dance with a specialization in performance, once I decided not to move to a big city, I knew the chances of being able to find a job in the Midwest in my specialty were slim to none, so I was most definitely willing to compromise- for a period of time at least.

After nine months of unemployment after graduation, I finally landed a job as a receptionist in a small medical office as an insurance verification specialist for durable medical equipment. It did not make a lot of sense with my theater degree, but it was better than no job!

Since I wasn’t weighed down with being busy with classes, papers, projects, rehearsals, and shows, I was able to spend more time in my Bible and time in prayer, and the Lord truly began working on my heart. Instead of becoming so focused on my frustration that my job was not in my field, on my way to work in the morning, I began asking the Lord to give me opportunities to show His love to people that I encountered in that small medical office.

I realized that God had placed me there in that office not just to perform a particular job to get a paycheck, but ultimately, no matter what task I accomplished, I was there to do it all for God’s glory. I also realized that God cared more about people than He did about my productivity or accomplishments; He wanted me to show others more about His love and if possible, share truth about Jesus.

In Colossians 3:17, the apostle Paul says in his letter to the Church as Colossae:

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” 

NIV

He was reminding the Colossians that their ultimate purpose on this earth was to give God glory by showing God’s love and walking in peace with one another and to do all things with a heart full of gratitude. 

What does it mean to give God glory?

The word “glory” bears with it the idea of greatness of splendor of God as it pertains to the Old Testament. In the New Testament, the word “glory” is translated to mean “honor, dignity, worship and praise.” When we put the two together, we see that glorifying God means to acknowledge His greatness and give Him all the worship and honor and thanksgiving in all that we do and say. God’s glory is the essence of His nature- we bring Him glory when we revel in His divine essence.

How often are we consumed with our mundane activities that we forget who we are doing it for? I believe if we lose the motivation that we are doing it to glorify God, we are prone to grumbling and complaining, much like the children of Israel. We become ungrateful, and our hearts begin to grow hard and cold towards God. We begin to simply “go through the motions” in life and soon we are looking to other things to satisfy a longing in our soul that only living a God-glorifying life can satisfy. We were made to worship God, and He gave us the gifts and abilities in which to do that every day. 

Are you finding yourself grumbling and complaining when you are doing mundane tasks throughout the day?

When you are tempted to complain about your daily activities, turn that into an opportunity to praise and thank God.

Are you questioning your purpose regarding what you are doing for a living, like your career for example? Trust that God has you exactly where you are supposed to be. Pray for wisdom and seek Godly counsel if you believe it is time for a change.

In the meantime, ask God for doors of opportunity this week to share the love of Christ with someone God has placed around you.

You will be amazed at how that will begin to change your perspective on seemingly meaningless tasks or situations that make you uncomfortable or frustrated. Suddenly, you will search out chances to glorify God and tell others about His amazing love through the glorious gospel!

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Created to Worship

Did you know that everyone was created to worship?

Yes, even those who would not consider themselves religious worship something or someone. 

Worship is ascribing worth to something or someone.

It is what you devote your time, your devotion, your affection, your finances, your heart to. If you allow yourself to really reflect on this, you will know in your heart where all of those things in your life are going to. 

As humans, we were created to worship God, but once sin came into the world, we started to worship anything but God. This tension, to worship God vs anything/anyone else, exists in the heart of every single man, woman, and child.

If you worship anyone or anything besides God Almighty, the Bible calls those people or those things idols. And when it comes to God, He doesn’t want you to give yourself away fully to anything or anyone but Him. He’s not egotistical or prideful, He just loves us so much and wants us to see the world and people like He does.

Worshiping God creates an atmosphere in our hearts that is conducive to see God mold us more and more into the image of Jesus Christ, His Son. We are fixing our attention and affections on giving God the upmost glory in and through our lives. Seeking God first and foremost in our life, means our hearts begin to long for the things of God versus the things of this world more and more each day that we walk with God.

The more we worship God by giving Him first place in our lives, our heart then becomes a breeding ground for selfless love to be produced in us and through us.

When the Lord begins to sanctify us and mold us and change our hearts, we are then able to love others with the Father’s love. 

In Matthew 22, Jesus responds to a group of Pharisees and Sadducees when he is asked what was the greatest commandment in the law:

“And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’38 This is the great and [o]foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets’”

Matthew 22:37-40, NASB

In prayer one day, as I was pondering this, I began singing this simple chorus:
Cultivate the ground of my heart

Til it yields a harvest of lasting fruit

For Your purpose

For Your plan…

How does God cultivate the ground of your heart?

Through worship- seeking God Almighty first and foremost and surrendering your life completely to Him more and more every day.

Worship is not just singing to the Lord (although that’s important). It is denying yourself and saying “yes” to Him every single day of your life. From seeking Him in prayer or by sharing the gospel with those God places in your path or by praying for those who are hurting, every “yes” to God is worship. When we love God with all that we are, our hearts can’t help but overflow with His love for others. 

Worship is a lifestyle.

It is constantly telling God “More of You and less of me” every day. Every time we obey God and say “yes” to Him, we give Him glory. We give Him worth with our words and our actions. Every father wants to see their children mature and succeed their love walk, and our Heavenly Father wants the same for us.

Take some time to reflect upon what is getting all of your attention, affections, and time. Who or what do you worship? Yourself? Your plans? Your job? Money? Nice clothes? Everything in this world will pass away, except for love (1 Corinthians 13). Are there areas in your life that you are holding back from God?

The more we say “yes” to God, the more He molds our hearts and they will overflow with His perfect Love. 

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Created for Greatness

One of the hardest things about living in this world as a Christian is not letting your mind conform to the earthly/carnal/temporal surroundings. The longer you are separated from Kingdom ways, which can be found in the Word of God, the easier it is to begin to think and act like the rest of the world who know so little of God’s ways. We become less and less heavenly-minded and begin to lose our focus on the eternal life that awaits us.

Paul urges us in Romans 12:2:

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

NKJV

The Word of God will transform our carnal way of thinking that we are naturally born with, and once we are born again by receiving Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we must continue in our transformation process because we aren’t “home” yet. Although we are citizens of heaven, we still have a temporary residence here on earth and because of that we are subject to its environment. We have to renew our mind daily with God’s Word.

I’ve personally experienced instances where I have been pulled into following society’s timeline or approval process, measuring the way I lived my life with the world’s standards and regulations.

One instance, in particular, is measuring success or accomplishment by popularity and quantity when using the finances, time, talent, or drive that the Lord has so graciously given us to use on this earth. Often, we use them to make sure we advance in this life for ourselves, but God’s perfect will is to use them to bring Him glory and reach people for His Kingdom. To the world, the more people hearing about the accomplishment, the greater the success and the more difference your life just made by contributing your gifts, time, or finances. The world is all about outward appearance, how something looks on the outside. But the Lord looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7).

If the world saw a story in the newspaper about a shepherd that left 99 sheep to go after 1 that had gone astray, they would consider it absolutely foolish! “You could have lost even more! Think of all of that business you could potentially lose!” I hear. Or what about King David (who was anointed the next King of Israel and awaiting his throne) who faithfully served King Saul even when he sought to kill him? “Honor his authority?! That throne is rightfully yours! Tell King Saul to take a hike!”

Or how about a man from Nazareth who changed the entire world forever with just twelve people who gave up their entire lives to follow Him? “You have HOW many followers on Twitter…TWELVE?! I have 6 MILLION…I’m WAY more influential than you!”

Now, I’m not saying that the Lord can’t use someone to advance the Kingdom who has 6 million followers of Twitter, but why do we think that He chooses to use that person over the one who only has twelve Twitter followers (in the context of influence, of course)? 

My point is that we must break ourselves free from the mindset that your life only matters when people hear about your accomplishments or contributions to society. God is looking at the motive behind our drive to do great things and this change in mindset requires us to not be conformed to the way the world thinks. We must seek His truth so that we may find His perfect will.

But we must ask ourselves:

As Christians, is our drive to do great things becoming about us, or are we pointing others to Jesus? Are we content with being an “unknown” to the world, but known by God Almighty?

John the Baptist began to lose disciples when Jesus came on the scene, but John knew His purpose on this earth: to prepare the way for the Lord’s coming; to point others straight to the King of Kings so that they can enter the gate of salvation. “More of Him and less of me,” John declared in John 3:30. This should be our mindset too as we live our life for God’s glory alone.

It is our nature to be self-centered, to long for recognition, to be applauded for our efforts, etc. Of course, there is nothing wrong with wanting credit for a job well-done, but we should always remember that “we are not our own. We’ve been bought with a price” (1 Corinthians 6:20). 

Anything we do, we should always give the credit and the glory to the One who gave us the ability to accomplish it and want nothing more than for others to grow and mature into a strong, healthy relationship with their Heavenly Father and Creator.

He sees each life as precious and doesn’t weigh one life more important than another.

So to the stay-at-home mom raising those little ones in the admonition of the Lord, you are doing great things for God! 

To the CEO of that multi-million-dollar company who gives all the glory to God, you are doing great things for God! To that youth pastor with a group of ten kids who you minister to week in and week out, you are doing great things for God! 

Just remember that success is to advance the Kingdom by sharing the gospel to one person at time! Give God the glory He deserves, not only with your words but with your heart…He created you to do great things for Him!

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