“For Him and Through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.” (Romans 11:36)
Amid his soarings into the superlative splendors, just when with eye undimmed he is strengthened to gaze into the excellent glory, the word “Son of man” falls on his ears, sobering the heart which else might have been intoxicated with the honor conferred upon it. Such humbling but salutary messages our depressions whisper in our ears; they tell us in a manner not to be mistaken that we are but men, frail, feeble, and apt to faint.” (C. H. Spurgeon, from “Lecture to my students”)
There is a tendency in all of us that is quite troublesome. I find that so many of us want to claim bragging rights for the good things God has done through us (or should I say in spite of us?) as if we were the reason for any good that has come out of us.
In Romans 11, Paul makes it very clear that it is only through Him (God) that we accomplish anything of lasting significance for His kingdom. The gifts we have are “of Him” and those gifts are only used correctly “through Him;” thus all glory must go “to Him.”
Many men have become quite famous and have built ministries because of an act of God. Soon thereafter, the man becomes the center of attention instead of the Lord Himself. This is a tragedy and is the result of broken trust between God and his servant. God does not need more ministries that will exalt or stroke the ego of a man; on the contrary, God is looking for dead men to do His greatest works.
Before we became Christians, we were full of ourselves. At conversion we were supposed to be emptied of ourselves and filled with His spirit (attend our own personal funerals and rise to life again). Why is it that so many people are longing to be recognized for what “they” have done in Jesus name, as though the credit should go to them? I, of all men, would be most pitiful if, at the end of my life, I was credited for anything good that has come out of my weakness. This is one reason why it is healthy for us to share the stories of our born again experience with others; so we never forget where we have come from.
We only have one thing to say in regard to our service to Him; “I have only done what a servant should do!” Oh, and by the way, God sees through false humility. As much as He doesn’t need another man exalting ministry, He sure doesn’t want any more Pharisees either.
Let us run the race with simplicity of devotion, blazing hearts and emptiness of self, for God will share His glory with no man. The greatest fulfillment of a love slave simply comes from serving the vision and purposes of his Master. The slave’s deepest desire is not the praise of man but the words of his Master spoken loud and clear, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”
Let us humble ourselves by realizing that we are but needy men (and women), frail, feeble and apt to faint. With this attitude and posture we will remember our need to abide in Him and in doing so, He will receive glory from our lives.
By Tom Zurowski