There’s this crazy race where I live, people build these contraptions that go through the water, the mud, the sand, and they race them. Why? For the Glory!
“For the glory” is kind of a satire, a cynical way of saying, why are we doing this messy, cold, somewhat pointless thing that’s sure to end in failure? For the glory!
One year during that race I started pondering the nature of glory, what is it? Why is it in the bible so much? What does it even mean? The bible says, “let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” It also says, “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.”
I had a major revelation once, I finally realized I had just one job, one role. No multi tasking required, no worry, no stress, no checking off a to do list, my sole role (or soul roll if you prefer,) is to give glory to God. Obviously that’s a real challenge if you aren’t quite sure what “glory” even is.
That’s complicated because “glory” is based on a couple of Hebrew words and a couple of Greek words, and the intentions,the meanings are really diverse. Majesty, honor, discernment, mystery, brightness…..
Ai yi yi. Nailing that word down is not so easy.
So I stumbled upon St Augustine who actually explored this very thing, “glory.” And he came up with the phrase, “clara notitia cum laude,” which means “brilliant celebrity with praise.”
That really resonated with me. I get the concept of being pleasing to God, of serving, but those things can sound very much like drudgery, duty, rules. I like to be a smart alec and say, “for the glory” when I am cleaning toilets, but I am pretty sure that is not what God had in mind.
He absolutely had in mind, “brilliant celebrity with praise.” We are the apple ofHis eye. He delights in us. As the song goes, I am famous in my Father’s eyes. He knows my name. I am already so adored….
Stepping into that reality is not always so easy, but praise and worship can be very reflective. Take note of how that verse is worded, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image….
We behold His glory and we will begin to receive His glory, too. A glass is a mirror.
So you are famous in your Father’s eyes.