The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Psalm 19:1
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31
I used to accompany for a very gifted and hard-working singer, who accepted many compliments on her work, always acknowledging them with an expression of thanks and the phrase "To God be the glory". It was a selfless expression of gratitude for her gifts. It also reminded those around her of the source of all the miracles we celebrate.
During a difficult period of my life, a friend who was a counselor listened to my thoughts about how I felt attacked and betrayed. She told me I had a lot to think about, and a lot to deal with. She then said she wanted me to do one thing in particular: "I want you to think about all the ways you can glorify God".
My mind silenced in surprise at her words. I had expected something else entirely for an action plan, something grounded in the world that was swimming around me. In that silence, I rediscovered what really mattered to me. The noise in my head had almost stolen that.
Often the noise of the world's chaos can drown out what is at our core, what governs our being. To glorify God is a simple task reminder that opens up everything we are about. It brings us home, to a place of safety and belonging. The world can be a challenging place, and it is up to each one of us to make it holy. But we carry that profound power inside of us, and can use it in everything we do.
Glorifying God, I decided, was simply recognizing how everything that felt true in my life was something I could do with the consciousness of honoring God's hand and God's work in what was going on. I could help to advance God's presence in my life and in the world, just by my focus on what it meant to be aware of and a part of God.
Prayer: God, help me to remember that to glorify you gives my life its meaning and wholeness. Help me to be open to you and help to give you to the world around me. The words on the wall of a concentration camp are like the faith I want to have: "I believe in the sun even when it's not shining. I believe in love even when I don't feel it. I believe in God even when he is silent." Help me continue to hear you in the silence that can itself be glorious. Amen.