“…yet, with respect to the promise of God,
he (Abraham) did not waver in unbelief,
but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God…”
What does it mean to give glory to God? Or to glorify God?
I have a rose garden. It is full of healthy thriving bushes. But I never take someone out and say, “Look at these beautiful bushes. Aren’t they glorious!” No, I wait until they are in full bloom (any day now) and then I revel in the splendor of the gorgeous roses, themselves. The glory of the rose bush is the rose.
‘“Glory” is the concentrated essence of all that is holy, excellent, and beautiful. For every being has its less perfect parts and its more perfect parts. ‘ – Horatius Bonar. As a Christian, I am like the bush. I must stay healthy not for my glory, but that I might show forth the glory of God (the perfect, beautiful Rose of Sharon.) There is nothing in me that is holy apart from God – nothing perfect, excellent, or beautiful.
That’s where pruning comes in. When I begin to glory in a part of the bush (my attempts, my health, my beauty, my career, my prowess, my children, etc…), then it must be pruned back so that the growth and glory goes to the flower (God). When a rose bush is growing big beautiful leaves, it must be pruned back so that the nourishment of the plant can be funneled to the flowers. My beautiful leaves actually hinder my putting forth God’s glory.
The next time that I say, “Lord, be glorified in me,” I will picture that rose bush and pray that there will be less of me to notice, and more of God, Himself in me.
Lord, let each of my boys not seek for their own glory, but that they might grow healthy (planted by streams of water) in all things, in order to show forth Your glory in their lives that others may see You.