In the beginning, God…
Those four words pack a big punch! Amidst the stated truths of the passage, I wonder if God used His first recorded phrase to reveal the intended order of life.
“In the beginning” marked a new period of time in history. The One who had always existed welcomed mankind into His story. We were created by God, for God, to live through the power of God.
The apostle Paul stated this truth when he wrote:
“For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever! Amen” (Rom. 11:36).
The Spirit of Christ living in and through us is our only hope of His glory – His holiness, the sum total of His perfection – to be revealed through our lives (Colossians 1:27).
Jesus said it this way: “If a man remains in Me and I in Him, he will bear much fruit. Apart from Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). This truth should be an obvious fact. God is holy, perfect, and righteous – right in every way. Apart from Him we’re not even close. Apart from receiving all things from Him we will not live in a manner that shows the world who He is and what He’s like.
Yet, it’s so easy for us to believe that everything in our lives must originate from us and come to pass through our own efforts. We mistakenly believe these two factors determine the results. But this was never God’s plan.
This truth becomes very real to me each time I prepare to teach. Sitting with my Bible and a notepad, I come to God professing that only He knows what the women I’m about to teach need to hear.
I could conjure up several ideas. They might be good ideas. But they wouldn’t be God’s ideal message for that specific group. I want the message to come from Him. He honors this request every time by giving me His ideas and His words.
I desperately seek to yield to the voice and power of the Holy Spirit each time I teach. When I’ve done these two things, the results are not my concern. They go straight back to Him.
Every Christ-follower has already submitted to this process. Salvation came FROM God, THROUGH Jesus, with all the glory going back TO Him. This practice should extend to all areas of life.
In making decisions, we should go immediately to God, seeking His wisdom and insight. After He’s revealed His way, we must execute the God-directed decision through the power of His Spirit, yielding our will and our ways in obedience to Him. Doing so will result in God-ordained and empowered results. All of this will bring glory to Him.
This is a life of humility: placing our confidence in and dependence on God. Relying on ourselves is the most basic definition of pride. It’s an “all about me” mentality.
God calls us to receive everything we need for life and godliness FROM Him, THROUGH the provision of Jesus, with all glory going back TO Him. Yet to live this way requires a radical change from relying on ourselves to trusting in and relying on God.
Psalm 9:10 says, “Those who know Your name will trust You, for You, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek You.” A shift of “letting go and letting God” requires trust. Trust is built over time through accurate knowledge of the person we are seeking to put our trust in.
Such a paradigm shift will first and foremost require making an intentional effort to meditate on who God is more than we focus and think about ourselves.
This is the first of 52 ways to glorify God:
#1 Meditate on who God is more than you think about yourself.
Meditating on the wonders of God would be a great place to begin:
“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands. Day after day they pour forth speech. Night after night they display knowledge” (Psalm 19:1).
Go outside. Look around. The wonders of our creative God are everywhere. Search the Internet for images of the northern lights or the galaxies. Be awed by the creative magnificence of our God.
Through this one intentional act, I believe you’ll see a radical shift in our thinking. By taking the time to do this, you’ll make a giant leap toward living for the glory of God.