October 3, 2018 • Life for Leaders
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
In Ephesians 3:20, we have seen that God “is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine” and that he does this by “his power that is at work within us.” It would be easy to take these glorious truths and miss their ultimate purpose.
Yes, to be sure, God works through us to fulfill his mission in the world. And, yes, as God works in us, we experience the unspeakable joy of God’s presence and power. But God acts not only to accomplish his mission and delight his people. Ephesians 3:21 reminds us of an even loftier purpose: “to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations.” This higher purpose is God’s glory.
As you may recall, Ephesians 1:11-14 revealed that glorifying God is our fundamental purpose in life. We are to “be for the praise of his glory” (1:12, 14). We exist so that God might be glorified through us. And how will this happen? God will be glorified when we devote ourselves to his glory, when we commit our lives to his ultimate purpose of bringing unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ (1:10), when we receive his grace through faith (2:8), when we walk in the good works God has prepared for us (2:10).
Thus, we glorify God not only in contexts we call “worship.” In fact, glorifying God is not primarily about what we do in our weekly gatherings but about how we act as God’s people scattered in the world. We glorify God through our praises, to be sure, but also through our work, our neighborliness, our citizenship, our seeking justice, our stewardship of finances, and our relationships. We are to glorify God each day through all we do (see Romans 12:1-2).
As we’ll see, the final three chapters of Ephesians offer lots of guidance for how we can live each day in a way that glorifies God. For now, let me encourage you to consider the following questions.
Something to Think About:
Do you ever think about what it means to live for God’s glory in the “daily grind” of your normal life?
Do you feel a desire to glorify God?
What helps you to seek God’s glory more intentionally and eagerly?
Something to Do:
As you begin your day, offer yourself and all that lies ahead to the Lord, asking that he might be glorified through you today.
To God be the glory, great things He has done;
So loved He the world that He gave us His Son,
Who yielded His life an atonement for sin,
And opened the life gate that all may go in.
O perfect redemption, the purchase of blood,
To every believer the promise of God;
The vilest offender who truly believes,
That moment from Jesus a pardon receives.
Great things He has taught us, great things He has done,
And great our rejoicing through Jesus the Son;
But purer, and higher, and greater will be
Our wonder, our transport, when Jesus we see.
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord,
Let the earth hear His voice!
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord,
Let the people rejoice!
O come to the Father, through Jesus the Son,
And give Him the glory, great things He has done. Amen.
“To God be the Glory” by Fanny Crosby, 1875. Public domain.
Dr. Mark D. Roberts is a Senior Strategist for Fuller’s Max De Pree Center for Leadership, where he focuses on the spiritual development and thriving of leaders. He is the principal writer of the daily devotional, Life for Leaders, and the founder of the De Pree Center’s Flourishing in the Third Third of Life Initiative. Previously, Mark was the Executive Director of the De Pree Center, the lead pastor of a church in Southern California, and the Senior Director of Laity Lodge in Texas. He has written eight books, dozens of articles, and over 2,500 devotions that help people discover the difference God makes in their daily life and leadership. With a Ph.D. in New Testament from Harvard, Mark teaches at Fuller Seminary, most recently in his D.Min. cohort on “Faith, Work, Economics, and Vocation.” Mark is married to Linda, a marriage and family counselor, spiritual director, and executive coach. Their two grown children are educators on the high school and college level.