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  • Writer's pictureJack Selcher

The Glory Challenge

Jesus in the sky wearing a royal robe

Most of us have stolen something. If nothing else, we’ve pilfered God’s honor and glory. “All honor and glory to God forever and ever! He is the eternal King, the unseen one who never dies; he alone is God. Amen” (1 Timothy 1:17 NLT).

We naturally covet His honor and glory. “Good sermon, pastor!” If it was truly good, God made it possible. It’s easy to forget that when people praise us for good things we have done.

We’re like UPS delivery people tempted to steal the packages (glory) we are to deliver to God. How can we know if we’re glory thieves? We will get to that shortly.

Most people know us superficially. To my local school district and its track and field athletes, I am a throws coach.

To one of my friends, I am a fisherman. To the master’s level competitors I met ten to twenty years ago, I was a discus thrower. To people of my denomination, I am a pastor, author, and former Secretary of the Conference.

To the neighbor across the street, I am a farmer. To many others in the neighborhood, I am a gardener. To a pastor in Africa, I am a Bishop.

Who are we to those who know us best? What do they observe as our defining passion?

If it isn’t God, we are distracted from God’s purpose for our lives—bringing Him honor and glory. We’re probably trying to make a name for ourselves.

An outstanding athlete I coached said that he wanted our local community to remember his name. We understand. We want to be remembered after we have passed from this earth, don’t we?

How do we leave a lasting legacy in our society? We must play by its rules to be in its halls of fame.

Our default setting is to grab glory. I attempted to win as many school awards as I could when I was in college. I needed them to prop up my self-image. I thought they would bring me love and respect. It was an unending, unfulfilling quest.

Thankfully, I don’t think that way now. I don’t have to prove anything to validate my worth. Neither do you.

We don’t have to perform for God to love us. Jesus said, “I am in them, and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me” (John 17:23 NLT). The Father loves us as much as He loves His Son. And that’s a lot.

Since we have nothing to prove, what is our purpose? In my devotional reading of Isaiah 47, I wrote this application (as if God was speaking to me): “Seek My honor, not your own.” I need frequent reminders. Jesus showed us how to do it.

He said, “I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. Now, Father, bring me into the glory we shared before the world began” (John 17:4–5 NLT). The same pattern applies to us.

Our purpose is to complete the work God gave us to do. “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He has planned for us long ago” (Ephesians 2:10 NLT).

This is a trustworthy saying, and I want you to insist on these teachings so that all who trust in God will devote themselves to doing good. These teachings are good and beneficial for everyone” (Titus 3:8 NLT).

Like Jesus, we seek God’s honor and glory now by doing the good things He planned for us long ago. We have different assignments.

What happens after we’ve completed them? “But there will be glory and honor and peace from God for all who do good—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile” (Romans 2:10 NLT). First the good works. Then glory.

The glory challenge is to wait patiently as we promote God’s glory and honor now by doing the good things He planned for us. Our glory, honor, and peace will come later.

We can do it because Christ strengthens us moment by moment (Philippians 4:13). His grace equips us in every situation to do the good things He has planned for us (2 Corinthians 9:8). #freediscipleshipresources #freeevangelismresources #freechristianleadershipresources 

See free spiritual growth resources for Christians at

God has equipped and empowered me to write His Power for Your Weakness—260 Steps Toward Spiritual Strength. It’s a free devotional, evangelism, and discipleship resource. Pastors have used it in Malawi, Mozambique, and Zambia to lead more than 2,400 people to faith in Christ and teach the basics of Christianity to 3,359 people. I invite you to check it out. 

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