In HOPE

 

 

 

  In HOPE 9.14

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David Timms  

 

 

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  Prayer

Father, touch my heart that I might hunger and thirst for You as never before. Turn my deepest longings and desires towards You. Help me see how to honor You more in every area of my life. May this day be more "to the praise of Your glory." Amen.

Scripture 

"We have been predestined ... in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory." (Ephesians 1:11-12, NIV)

 

 

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“God is most glorified in me when I am most satisfied in Him." 
~ John Piper, Desiring God , p.10.

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His Glory 

We need to break the mirror and see more of God than ourselves. Even while we speak of Him we may stare at ourselves, concerned that other people consider us eloquent, accurate, or compelling.

 

It’s so easy to elevate our greatness, to hunger for our glory, and to seek applause for our efforts. We expect and honor narcissism rather than hold it in disdain.

 

Even church worship services can devolve into discussions of our felt needs, battles over our musical preferences, sermons that dispense advice to improve our relationships, humor that distracts us from our boredom or pain, or slick performances that satisfy us ... all of which does little or nothing to glorify God.

 

Yet, the apostle Paul writes that God predestined us for this very purpose ... “to be to the praise of His glory” (Ephesians 1:12). Indeed, Paul uses the phrase three times in his opening salvo to the Ephesians – 1:6, 12, 14.

 

It matters.

 

When we live “to the praise of His glory” we don’t need to embrace a false humility, refusing to accept compliment or gratitude. But we won’t seek such things. Indeed, we’ll consider ourselves to have failed if people speak more of our abilities than the Father’s grace. We’ll be grieved if others speak of our biblical soundness but have no deeper hunger for the One to Whom all Scripture points us. We'll measure our life's "success" by whether we've effectively pointed people to Him, not attracted people to ourselves.

 

Biblical processes always begin with God, not us. He was “in the beginning.” We came along later. He is the Creator. We were created. He deserves all glory, honor, and majesty. And our grasping for awards, recognition, prominence, power, appreciation, or applause reflects the distorted and misdirected lives we live.

 

The world has little vision of the Father because He must constantly abide in our shadows. What if we resolved to live in His shadow, instead?

 

We will only live faithful to Christ and embrace “every spiritual blessing” once we determine to spend our lives “to the praise of His glory.” Let’s break a few mirrors and look beyond ourselves a little more today. And perhaps others will begin to see Him rather than us. That can only be good.

 

In HOPE –

David

 

 

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You can find back issues of "In HOPE" (2005-2009) at http://www.hiu.edu/inhope/ .

David Timms serves in the Graduate Ministry Department at Hope International University in Fullerton, California. "In HOPE", however, is not an official publication of the University and the views expressed are not necessarily those of the Administrators or Board. "In HOPE" has been a regular e-publication since January, 2001.