Why is the ocean blue? Why are leaves green? Why do birds sing? Why did Jesus die a criminal’s death? One simple reason: because God wanted it that way. He exists, creates, and loves … for Himself (Isaiah 46:9-10). This life is not about me; it’s all about Him! God wants the glory and will receive the glory. He is a jealous God and will not share that glory with anyone or anything else. This kicks against me slightly – because I feel that desire for glory too, yet it’s a sin (pride). So why is God allowed to want glory and fame, yet I am not? Because He is God. Who else would you want God to magnify if not Himself? Who else is there that God could humble Himself before? There is none. And when I take what is rightfully His, then I commit idolatry and the sins of pride cloud His glory. Everything God is & does has a divine purpose and intent far greater than we can visualize (Isa. 42:8, 43:7, 48:11).
It is essential to remember (in a discussion about God’s glory) that we can provide nothing to God that He needs. He doesn’t need our service, our worship, our love. Quite the opposite – we need Him. For everything (Acts. 17:28).
God gets glory for everything. Everything. The beautiful and the ugly, the bad and the good, the dark and the light. From animals, from the stars, from man, from it all. But we have a capacity to grow in how we glorify God – above all creation. We must respond in steps. With every bit by bit, little by little, we respond rightly to each stage and we will grow. Higher and higher we go, and the higher we climb in God’s glory, the more we can see and understand about life around us. Keep in mind that these steps do NOT lead to Heaven or salvation – they lead to God (to pleasing Him and glorifying Him). An unbeliever will not climb the steps (Rom. 1:20-24), but a believer might never climb past step #1. You can respond to His glory as revealed to you and grow thereby.
Step 1 (floor-level): the Glory of Nature (Ps. 19:1, 8:3-4)
Every man has seen a general revelation from creation. We each know there is a God, but how will respond will determine our destiny.
Step 2 (specific): the Glory of the Word [Jesus] (Jn. 1:1, 14)
Jesus is the fulfillment of the glory of the Temple and the Law in the Old Testament.
The Bible is glorious and would fit here as being the Written Word.
Step 3 (ordinary): the Glory of Thankfulness (1 Cor. 10:31; Ps. 50:23; 1 Tim. 4:3-5)
Daily glorification of God for the normal things: food, drink, life, friends, health…
How often do you stop and praise God for what most take for granted?
Sin isn’t just a harmful list of things — it is leaving God out of the ordinary affairs of life!
Step 4 (special): the Glory of Affliction (Rom 8:18; Isa 48:11)
In our most painful hour, it is difficult (yet essential) we remember that God is working all things for His glory and our good.
Praise Him in the storm (and for the storm, too) if at all possible.
Step 5 (ultimate): the Glory of Hope (Romans 5:2)
When you live your life with one hope, one goal in mind: to glorify and honor God Almighty…
This is the highest level of glorifying God that one might reach that leads to the highest level of intimacy with Him.
** With each step taken, with each stage conquered, you will notice something else growing inside of you: your happiness.
The truth is (although not the best motive): the more you glorify God, the more satisfied and fulfilled you become!