Whose glory are you and I living for? Our own? Or God’s glory?
As the New Year begins, I am trying to make it a daily practice to pray and ask God to use me and my family for His glory. Yesterday, I prayed that way with the entire family as we talked about goals for the new year – 2009. Then, we went to my parents’ home and ate lunch. During that prayer before the meal, my dad prayed the same thing I did that morning – about being teachable and mindful that we are to live for His glory! It was so cool because he and I had not even talked before that point about anything, much less spiritual matters!
Clearly, the Holy Spirit was laying the same message on our hearts.
Then, this morning, I read the Lord’s words to Jeremiah the prophet about how Judah had become like a “ruined loincloth” (underwear indicated the closeness and intimacy the Lord had with Judah) in chapter 13 of Jeremiah. Read that entire chapter but I focused in upon Jeremiah 13:11: “For as the loincloth clings to the waist of a man, so I made the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah cling to me, declares the Lord, that they might be for me a people, a name, a praise, and a glory, but they would not listen.”**
Like Juday, we are created to be a people who “cling” to Christ and bring praise and glory to God yet we have to be humble, TEACHABLE, and listen to His instruction!
If we are not listening to Him with humility and a teachable spirit, we are like a ruined undergarment.
When I teach about the biblical approach on addiction or address some of the man-centered ideas in certain psychological theories, the students are almost always RESISTANT to this message similar to Judah in Jeremiah 13. At first, it used to discourage me greatly, but now, I have witnessed the Lord change the hearts of His people with His truth through my being obedient to the message.
Sometimes I feel like Jeremiah – preaching a difficult message of truth to God’s people who are not always teachable and open to the Holy Spirit but would rather cling to their previous beliefs regardless of what the Word of God says. How sad!
Please join me in prayer for those we teach this year – that they would be open to the Holy Spirit as they study God’s Word seeking for biblical answers!
** – The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (electronic ed.) . Good News Publishers: Wheaton.
-Mark (reminded that I live to glorify His name and I must work at being teachable and open to His Word of truth myself taught to me by the Holy Spirit)