Verse for today – “To the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory (Ephesians 1:12).”
What a privilege and great honor it is to reflect the glory of God! What a blessing! On several occasions I have been in the great outdoors and come upon a large, serene lake. On those occasions, with the water perfectly still, it is almost breath-taking as I look down at the lake and witness the reflection of a gorgeous sunset pouring through the landscape in front of it. I had to stop and stare. Later, I moved on, only reluctantly, and with a much greater appreciation for such beauty. Thinking back, I must ask the question, “What is it about that lake?”. Have you ever considered this? Certainly, it is peaceful, lying there so still. As a matter of fact, if the water was choppy the picture would not be nearly so perfect. But as I consider it, the real beauty of the lake, to me, is how it reflects the scenery behind it and around it. This is another blessing God has given to those who belong to Him and try to follow Him. We are privileged to reflect God’s glory.
Certainly, we as human beings, are not that awe-inspiring. If we, as human beings, try to promote ourselves, it is usually rather dissatisfying. When we do this, we often come across as selfish and prideful. But if we attempt to reflect God’s character, that is another story entirely.
Please consider some of the Bible’s advice and cautions about who and what we are promoting. Paul writes, “For we do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bondservants for Jesus’ sake. For God who said, ‘Light shall shine out of darkness,’ is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ (2 Cor. 4:5-6).” With these words, Paul emphasizes that he and his team are not trying to promote themselves; but instead, they are trying to serve. What is the goal of their service? To reflect God’s glory. Paul says that the same God who created light, back at the beginning of time, has now shone in the Christian’s heart so that the light of God and the knowledge of God will be on display. From another angle, think about this simple thought: “We love because He first loved us (1 John 4:19).” Here again, we see the same privilege; Christians can reflect who God is and what He is like! In this case they do so by loving people just as God loves people. What a privilege!