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Why do I exist? Why did God create me?
God tells us in Isaiah 43:7 that “Everyone who is called by My name, whom I have created for My glory; I have formed him, yes, I have made him.”
In Colossians 1:16 we read that “For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth…All things were created through Him and for Him.”
In Romans 11:36 we are told “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.”
These passages, as well as what we see as a common theme throughout Scripture, tell us that our purpose is to live for God’s glory. What does that mean to me here and now?
Living for God’s glory means that I consider His glory (whether or not He will be exalted) in everything I do. It means that I consider His will and the fact that He is present with me when I drive, when I shop, when I engage in relationships and in how I spend my time, money and talents as well as in how I set my priorities. It means that God is the “center and focal point” of life; every circumstance and activity is viewed through the lens of God-centeredness. It means that everything I do is pleasing to God (it blesses Him) and at the same time, the way I do and say things will honor God in the eyes of those around me—my light will shine before men (Matt 5:16). It means that I acknowledge my utter dependence upon God when I make plans. Because of sin and the sin nature within us, no one, not even Christians, can live whole-heartedly for God’s glory. But there should be evidence of increasing God-centeredness and decreasing self-centeredness in a Christian’s life.[i]
How much of your life do you live to exalt God? How much of your daily activity do you perform without any reference to God? How many choices to bless God over self do you make throughout each day?
On a scale of 0 to 3, indicate where you think you are now by circling a number below:
In the chart on the next page, keep a record over the next week of how conscious you are of God’s glory, His will and His presence in your day-to-day activities. Each day is broken into 3 segments: Morning, afternoon and evening. Stop and evaluate yourself 3 times each day on how God-centered you have been during that time period. In each block, do 2 things:
1) Grade yourself with a number (similar to the scale 0-3 from above)
2) Jot one- or two-word notes to help you recall what you did to exalt/bless God
Now that you have evaluated yourself 3 times each day for a week, calculate an average of your scores. Add up your scores and divide by 21 since there are 21 time blocks. If you missed 1 evaluating time block, you would divide the total by 20. If you missed 2 time blocks, divide by 19, etc.
Indicate your average on the line below:
How close were you to your original guess on page 1?
Lack of God-centeredness is not necessarily due to deliberately putting God out of our mind, although we often do that when we willfully sin (indulge ourselves in behaviors which we know is rebellion against God’s standard). Normally, we just ignore God. We take for granted the things we have without being mindful that everything is a gift from our loving Father. We tend not to live every moment aware that we are in the presence of an all-seeing, all-hearing God.[ii]
We must remember that we are responsible to God for every thought; every attitude; every deed and every word that comes out of our mouth. In addition we are dependent on Him for every breath we take and for every muscle we move; for every thought we think and every concept we learn.
What changes do you plan to make in your life in order to grow in your practice of living for God’s glory in your normal day-to-day activities?
[i] Adapted by Nanette Loveless from Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate by Jerry Bridges (Colorado Springs; NavPress, 2007), 53-61.[ii] Ibid.