Deflecting Glory

1 Timothy 1:17
Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Of all the people whose lives are exposed in Scripture, perhaps Paul most of all represents someone who could be admired and looked up to.  He had a dramatic conversion story and a powerful testimony.  He had an impressive résumé of service for the Lord.  He left a legacy not only in the churches he planted, but in the individual lives he touched so profoundly.  He spoke before the most powerful men in Rome.  His influence spread across the known world.  And his writings make up a large portion of our New Testament today.

But though he could perhaps find much in his own life to brag about, Paul was always careful to deflect the glory back to God.  He wasn’t taking credit for any of the things he had accomplished.  Sure, he was a willing vessel, but it was God’s power that was at work in him.  Yes, his life was changed in dramatic fashion, but it was God’s grace accomplishing that.  He preached and built and toiled and wrote, but it was all because of Jesus.  He knew what he was without Christ, and so he sought all the more to proclaim Him and all that He is and all He has done and will do.

And the greatness of God is surely to be magnified in our own lives, as well.  No matter how little or how much we’ve been able to accomplish for His cause, it is only because of Him working in and through us.  Indeed, it is only by His grace that we are able to live for Him at all, because without Him we’re dead and headed for hell, still seeking glory for ourselves.  And no matter who we are and how prominent our place, our duty is to deflect all the glory to the only one worthy of it.  Our place is bowed before a King in humble submission and service, exalting the goodness and greatness of our holy and eternal God.

So may we seek ever more in our lives to bring glory to our Lord.  Let us reflect often on the person of Jesus Christ and all that He is and seek to praise Him more and more.  His greatness is unmatched.  His perfection is complete.  His power and majesty are awe-inspiring.  And there is no one above Him.  So may we humbly seek His glory above our own.  May we live in such a way that Christ can be magnified more and more as we labor faithfully for Him in whatever He has given us to do.  And then when we reach the end of our time of service here, we’ll have lived, like Paul, a life that mattered for His sake.