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Bringing honour to God
- Jacob Ninan
There must be a time in our life when we decide that instead of seeking honour for ourselves, henceforth we want to seek to honour God. He is the only one who deserves honour, anyway. The more we get to know ourselves, the more we have to acknowledge that what we deserve is quite the opposite, actually dishonour and shame. If God hadn't shown us mercy we wouldn't even be here, but where we deserve to be, in the lowest parts of hell. But God deserves honour, not only for the gracious way in which He has dealt with us, but mainly for the great God He is, whatever aspect of His nature or works we choose to consider. And it is only right that we do all we can to bring honour to Him.
When we think of this, probably the easiest thing we can do is to honour Him with our lips, as we do especially on Sundays when we sing His praises and show our worship to Him. The question we need to ask ourselves is whether that is the only way we honour Him. Something God had against Israel was that while they honoured Him with their lips, their hearts were actually far from Him (Is.29:13). We may be able to sing our worship songs from memory and feel a great thrill from singing them. But God may not be not honoured through our hearts. It is not that the songs don't come from our hearts when we sing them; at that point we may be sincere and mean what we sing. But if this is not the general character of our lives God is not really honoured.
Do we dishonour God by having priorities other than Him during the week in the way we make choices and decisions? Are their things in the way we conduct our business, deal with other people including our family, etc., that we know to be ungodly? Do we keep God and our earthly life in two separate compartments not allowing Him to 'interfere' with the way we do things? When we are in difficult situations do we ignore God's voice and choose the easier, more comfortable and the more advantageous paths? How can we then say we worship and honour God? All our Sunday morning activities don't mean anything to God if this is how things are with us at other times.
When Joseph was faced with a situation that was very tempting he ran out of the place saying, "I can't do this to my God" (Ge.39:9)! When Abraham was torn between the God he worshipped and his only son he loved, he chose God, and that is what registered in God's mind (Ge.22:12).
Now we are not great heroes, and so our tests are also small, according to our size! But when we fail even in our small tests what it shows is that we are not serious about honouring God in our lives. That is why we need to make a commitment to God that things will be different in future. It's not that we won't ever fall again or slip up, but when our intention is clear in our heart and mind, we are going to become better and stronger at actually living to honour God. We can pick ourselves up and run more carefully if we fail. Then we begin to show our real worship to God (Ro.12:1).