Every worldview is played out in life, regardless of what it is. The way we think and act is, literally, determined by the worldview presuppositions we hold. Of course, the Christian worldview is no different. To the degree our worldview is informed by the Bible, our thoughts and actions will move in the direction of living a Christlike life. Of course, there are many different areas where this plays out. Today we want to look at one of them – expressing the glory of God in daily life.
The very idea of expressing the glory of God in our lives is such an expected part of our Christian faith that I wonder how much we consciously think about the implications of this idea. Generally, I believe most Christians think about it mostly either while enjoying time in a worship service or when having special personal devotional moments. But in truth, it should increasingly be a part of every expression of our lives. The sanctification element of the salvation process that is working in our lives should lead us to that result.
What it Means to Express Gods Glory
The concept of expressing God’s glory in our lives is found in several places in the Bible. Perhaps one of the clearest examples is found in 1 Corinthians 10:31-32. It says, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” (NIV)
People’s worldview beliefs affect the choices they make in life. Someone who holds a naturalistic worldview promotes self purposes. One with a non-Christian theistic worldview necessarily promotes legalism. Someone with an Animistic worldview will promote mysticism. And a person with a Far Eastern Thought worldview must promote impersonal expressions of reality.
But a person who holds a biblical worldview promotes God’s purposes.
So, what does this mean for daily life? There are obviously a massive number of possibilities – so many, in fact, that it would be impossible to even list them all here. But there are some major categories that we can look at to get a sense of how this should play out in the life of a Christian.
How You Conduct Yourself at Work
How we conduct ourselves at work relates both to our actions and our attitudes. When doing actual work, a lazy attitude and shoddy workmanship simply do not glorify God. Christian workers should be the best ones in the organization. Treating other people badly also cannot glorify God. This does not mean we cannot hold others to high standards and enforce those standards. What it does mean is that we recognize the innate value of all others and treat them as person’s made in the image of God.
How You Treat Your Spouse and Children
Life in a family is probably the most difficult relationship context people have. That is because there must be so much give and take. Expressing God’s glory in the treatment of family members requires putting other people above oneself. This does not mean you must totally throw out your own desires. The ideal is that everyone in the family is looking out for everyone else. But even when other people are not expressing it properly, allowing it to get out of kilter in your own life makes it impossible to express God’s glory.
Integrity in Your Business Dealings
It is impossible to do God’s will using methodologies which are contrary to his will. God has revealed that honesty and integrity are his will – regardless of the circumstances. Living life using values which run contrary to that can never glorify God.
How You Worship
Most people think of worship as a corporate meeting or as a personal devotional time. In fact, though, it is any time we stand in the presence of God and acknowledge his worthiness – whether that happens to be in a personal or corporate setting. God created us for relationship, and unless you are engaging him in that two-way relationship where meaningful communication is flowing back and forth, you are not worshiping and your life cannot express his glory.
How You Study
Certainly study applies to formal schooling, but is so much broader than that. The fact is, God created us with the ability to “know.” The ability to acquire knowledge is one of the very characteristics of personhood which God implanted into mankind when he created us in his image. As good stewards of this characteristic, we should be taking every opportunity we can to study in ways which receive God’s approval. Much of this study relates to things which allow us to become more productive in the world. Other study relates to things which give us greater insight into the ways and purposes of God. We can only express God’s glory to the extent we understand what that is all about, and we get that by studying.
How You Spend Your Time and Money
The concept of stewardship is one of the most important biblical concepts. But stewardship is not just about the money we give to the church. It is about how we conceive of all of the aspects of our lives. The biblical concept of stewardship is that God is the owner of everything. In his economy, human beings have been appointed to be the stewards (managers) of his resources in the world. Our duty, then, is to discern how he wants us to manage all of the things which he has placed in our care. This would include such things as our salary, our home and car, our job, our family, our time and anything else we can think of. They all belong to God and we are tasked with discerning what he wants us to do with them and use them that way. We are only able to glorify God to the degree we exercise our stewardship of his resources his way.
How You Witness for Christ
A witness is a person who has first hand knowledge of some event. In the case of our Christian witness, we know Christ personally and have, literally, been commissioned by Christ to share that knowledge so that others may also know him in a personal relationship. Since this is an actual commission Christ has given us, actually doing it is necessary to express the glory of God through our lives. There are many different ways and venues to do this, but expressing God’s glory requires that we understand and do it in the appropriate ways.
How You Promote the Kingdom of God in the World
Doing the work of God in the world is greatly affected by the cultural environment we live in. When the environment is anti-God and we are persecuted or repressed for expressing our faith, the amount we are able to do is diminished. As such, we should be doing all we can to promote the values of God in the culture in order to create an environment which is favorable to doing the work of God. This is actually a part of our stewardship. When we do this, we express the glory of God.
The Challenge of Expressing God’s Glory
For human beings, expressing God’s glory in the various parts of life is a challenge at best. It is asking that a supernatural expression be made from a natural platform. Based on natural effort, it is literally impossible. But in the reality God has devised, it is not impossible because, for the believer, the one whose glory we are called upon to express lives in us and will express his glory himself to the degree we allow it to happen.
What we must remember is that Christian salvation is not merely a “moment in time” event. Of course it begins at a moment in time when we invite Christ into our lives. But in its ultimate expression, salvation is a process that begins at a moment in time, then continues forward for the rest of our existence.
When it comes to the rest of our mortal lives on earth, salvation is expressed by the spiritual growth and development that happens as we cultivate our personal relationship with God. Thus, as we live day by day, God’s glory should be increasingly expressed.
There is no question about the difficulty of the struggle we face as we seek to overcome the tendency to sin that we inherited from the Fall. There is also no question as to the power of God in us which is able to overcome that tendency. But it doesn’t happen automatically. We have to put our will behind it and decide to live in that relationship. To the degree we do, we will express the glory of God in our lives.
© 2014 Freddy Davis