Wednesday, July 9, 2014

God's glory is our priority

Did you know that according to Isaiah 43:7, you and I were created specifically for God's glory? Yes, this is the very reason we were born and what we are to strive for always in our life - to glorify God Almighty. What an awesome thought, huh?

God formed mankind with His own hands... He gave us purpose to tend and care for a planet He customized exclusively for our existence. And He did so with the intent that we would reflect His light while living in acknowledgement of His eternal beauty and splendor. Furthermore, He made us special in His eyes. He always planned on relating with us on the most personal and intimate level. Yes, God made man (in His own image, mind you) to love and honor His Name while showering us with unending blessings beyond measure. What a good and generous God we were made to serve. For the Creator of all things has offered us each the sweetest, most fulfilling life. Yet sadly, many choose to ignore and reject Him. Worse yet, some falsely claim Him, but fail to believe and acknowledge His rule as they live out their life. I wonder, what do you think God will say to those who do not truly believe in Him and follow after His intended plan?

Then I will tell them plainly, "I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!" (Matthew 7:23)

It only stands to reason that when men fail to believe and glorify God, our lives cannot be truly fulfilling. It goes against our creation when we live out of agreement from God's plan and fail to give Him first priority. We become more and more dissatisfied and seek after our own selfish ways in desperation to feed our empty soul. Our sin-infested desires corrupt us from seeing His redeeming light. When this occurs... when our plans do not match God's plan, then we live in biblical disagreement and question His authority - all the while disobediently focusing on ourselves rather than reflecting on His image.

Think about it... what do we, as humans, want in life? In answering this question, do we think about God first? Not according to the evidence of this world. No, we want to be married. We want to be wealthy. We want to be beautiful. We want to be popular. We want to feel balanced. We want to know peace. We want to gain "spiritual" insight. We want to be successful. But do we want these things... these securities... these idols... more than we want God? Do we acknowledge and worship His name in all matters... or do we worry over the delivery of our life's wish list and look outside of Him for answers?

They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator - who is forever praised. (Romans 1:25)

When we seek after idols and walk outside of God's glory our hunger can never be satisfied. Our hearts can never be full. In short, without living each day rejoicing in His light and claiming Him as our own, we will never be content with His love... or satisfied in His timing... or secure in His promises... or in cooperation with His plan.

This is why sinful men so desperately need the grace and wisdom of Jesus to guide them toward His glory... toward whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable. For anything that is excellent or praiseworthy originates from God. We must always think about such things in context of Him and not ourselves. We must always praise and glorify Him first and know that He will bring us into restoration and fullness.

God's word says, “Ascribe to the LORD, O families of nations, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength, ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name. Bring an offering and come before him; worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness.” (1 Chronicles 16:28-29)

According to this passage, there are two direct actions that we must follow in order to glorify God. First, we must always “ascribe” or give honor and reverence to His name. Why? Because there is no other Name that deserves eternal praise and worship... there is no other God. Isaiah 42:8 confirms God's position on this by claiming, "I am the LORD; that is my Name! I will not give my glory to another or my praise to idols.” (Isaiah 42:8)

The second action instructs us to “bring an offering” to God when we come before Him in worship. What offering are we to bring to God to glorify Him? Paul said it perfectly in Romans 12, “I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable, or well pleasing and perfect.” (Romans 12:1-2)

Ladies, WE are the offering... our whole self... our whole life. We are to openly and unapologetically glorify God in everything! We are to love Him first with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. All our human faculties, all of our humanness - our hearts, minds, eyes, hands, thoughts, emotions, attitudes... everything that encompasses "us" - must be presented to God. In other words, we are to give up control and turn everything over to Him, just as a literal sacrifice was given totally to God on the altar. Whatever we do in word and deed, we are to do ALL for His glory! This is our purpose! This is what every detail of every day we draw breath should point to... God's glory!

Bringing ourselves as an offering to the Lord is not only about listening to and agreeing with Him. We must be bold to follow through with the decision to actually sacrifice ourselves over to Him in obedience. We must follow the commands contained in His Word and do what our great Shepherd has said. We must live how He instructs us to live. Why? Because, "from everlasting to everlasting the LORD's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children - with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.” (Psalm 103:17-18)

Can you give God glory without such devotion and love? Jesus reiterated the idea that glorifying and loving God are one and the same in John 14:15: “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” (John 14:15) So, how do we love God with all our heart, soul, mind, strength? We are to give God glory ALWAYS and IN EVERYTHING! Impossible? No! For in Christ, it is possible. In Christ, we can find a new life!

Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you. It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” With that same spirit of faith we also believe and therefore speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you in his presence. All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4)

As Christians we were made to live as “jars of clay.” We are living vessels containing evidence of God's glory and are meant to spotlight His light to those in need of knowing His perfection. His glory is our constant. Because of this, we can only find the very source of all beauty and the assurance of all fullness in Christ Jesus. When we agree to let the Savior be acknowledged and honored, nothing will be lost to us. Everything we desire will be granted to us in His time and for His good purpose. That's the plan.

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (Matthew 6:33)

I encourage every DW to consider if God's glory is your true priority in all matters. Is He your motivation in every moment or are you seeking something else... something selfish? I pray that we will each ascribe to give ourselves fully to Jesus and honor the only Name worthy of praise. Let's make the Master our only agenda. There is nothing beyond Him to focus on. He is in full control, so let's claim His authority over our lives and rejoice daily in His plan. We were made for His glory. So, today... let's live sacrificially and give Him all glory! This is the day, ladies!

Lord, we obediently offer ourselves to you. We pray that you use our lives to reveal Your majesty. We believe that you are God and all we need to be fully satisfied. May all praise and honor and glory and blessing be Yours forever and ever. No matter what may occur in this world, may we always keep our eyes focused and remain devoted to You and nothing else. Hallelujah to the mighty King of kings... the Light of the world... our good and holy Creator... our Savior, Jesus the Christ!!! Glory... ALL glory to God in the highest! We live to worship YOU! Use us to fulfill your holy purpose... for it is indeed an honor!

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. (Mark 12:30)

So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31)


Blessings!

~Victoria

© 2011 The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson

1 comment:

  1. God is so good to me, i can only say this, when you have gotten to the end of yourself and looked in all your friends, family, relationship interests, work and hobbies and found that you remain unfulfilled it is then the door to true obedience is opened. The song says there is nobody greater...and its true, having searched all over in my life, sacrificed and obeyed everyone and everything else, what have i gained at 23? not much, but the hand of God has always covered me and i urge and implore you to seek the Lord, as you seek him and get to know him, he will empower you. Its hard to obey a stranger when they ask you to make a leap of faith, but its easier to the same thing for someone you know personally won't hurt you or ask you to do something that'll hurt you. It's the walk of faith. Getting to know God and trust him.

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