“Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31
I had been working numerous hours on a book I was writing, when everything inside of me began to scream, stop! I was pushing myself persistently in order to meet an upcoming deadline. However as my body continued its persuasion to cease labor, I finally decided to take a break. As I stepped aside from a time of writing, I knew something wasn’t quite right.
A few hours went by and I prepared to turn in for the evening. I had phoned my sister to ask, if she would check on me the following day. Things were acting up within my body and it caused an alarm. The next day when I awoke, my eyesight was affected as well as my walking. I drove myself to the emergency room and was admitted to the hospital. After days of running countless tests, the doctors discovered that I had Mono.
Months of bed rest were required as I dealt with this sickness. As days turned into weeks, discouragement battled to rule my heart, but God’s grace overtook its influence. I would soon come to understand in a way like never before, the true meaning of glorifying God in all things.
Glorify His Name
I knew the value of living out a life to bring honor to His name, but glorifying Him in a time of difficulty or even sickness was new to me. Yet instead of continuing to struggle, I brought before God my illness and prayed, “How can I glorify You through Mono?” From that moment on, my affliction no longer held a grip on me. While the effects of Mono continued, its power to rule my emotions perished.
My restoration journey brought about the same situation. Would I glorify God through my assigned voyage, or complain about every single step. I must admit, for a season, my tongue carried with it numerous complaints of the path God had me on as well as an attitude to boot. There was no glorifying God, but instead, begrudging the course I had been assigned to.
“Then they despised the pleasant land; They did not believe in His word, 25 But grumbled in their tents; They did not listen to the voice of the Lord.” Psalm 106:24-25
The children of Israel had been freed from a life of slavery. However their response to the testings in the wilderness would derive from hearts subdued in captivity. The Israelites succumbed to a different form of bondage. Take special notice once again to four factors that invaded the children of Israel from Psalm 106. (They despised, they did not believe, they grumbled, they did not listen.) It is important to guard against giving these components influence over our hearts. For not only will they affect our walk with Christ, they will be the cause and effect of a harmful attitude as well.
Our Attitudes Will Affect Everything In Our Lives
At times, we may be enticed to criticize our current, ordered location. Yet once our mission becomes one of complaining, we will take on an entirely different attitude. When we struggle with God’s method of events instead of trusting in His sovereign will, a negative spirit will quickly take root. And when this takes place, we can hinder what God desires to do in and through our lives.
So Jesus said to Peter, “Put the sword into the sheath; the cup which the Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?” John 18:11
The day had finally arrived and Jesus knew it was time. With lanterns, torches and weapons, the soldiers made their way to where He was staying. After a time of dialogue between Jesus and the officers, Peter took it upon himself to try and rescue His Lord from His moment. After chopping off the ear of one of the high priests, Jesus immediately told Peter to put the sword back. He then stated, “The cup which the Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?”
The biggest death that came to my life during my restoration journey was to myself. I learned that life was not about me, but about glorifying my Lord and Savior. Instead of trying to escape my assigned season, God moved my heart to comply.
I received a Presidential scholarship to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth, TX. God would use messages from the professors as well as the Biblical counseling classes to teach me life-changing lessons. While sitting in class one day, I heard repeatedly the message, “Glorify God in all you do.” These words brought about a transformation in my thinking and a changed heart that would never again be the same. I learned the utmost importance of glorifying our Father in and through every situation He brings to us.
Give Him Praise
“Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” Colossians 3:17 NASB
Before the beginning of time, Jesus knew the cups He would set before us to drink. He also knew the purpose behind each one. When we can say with confidence, “Shall I not drink this cup?” then we can say with certainty who is Lord of our lives. God will never ask His children to partake of anything less than His very best for their lives. He has a plan in everything, even in the cup He has set before you to drink. For each one is for His glory and His honor.
Instead of becoming a hostage to your circumstances, ask God to show you how to glorify His Name through every situation you face. Even in the process of your restoration journey. It truly will change your life.
Prayer: Not to us, O LORD, not to us, But to Your name give glory, Because of Your lovingkindness, because of Your truth. In Jesus’ Name-A-men. (Psalm 115:1)
Great Is Your Faithfulness
The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23 NASB)
Have you ever heard the expression, “Back to the Potter’s house we go?” I have and have also experienced first-hand its true meaning. At one point in my journey, not only was God bringing a restoration most amazing to my life, but also a divine reshaping.
The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord saying,“Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will announce My words to you.” Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something on the wheel. But the vessel that he was making of clay was spoiled in the hand of the potter; so he remade it into another vessel, as it pleased the potter to make. Then the word of the Lord came to me saying, Can I not, O house of Israel, deal with you as this potterdoes?” declares the Lord. “Behold, like the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel. (Jeremiah 18:1-6 NASB)
Jeremiah was soon to receive a staggering message from God, as he monitored the work of a potter working on a vessel. As he quietly observed the potter’s production, a change was about to take place. The clay had become spoiled in the hands of the potter. However, with certainty, the potter would not leave the vessel in such disarray. “So he remade it into another vessel, as it pleased the potter to make” (Jer. 18:4).
The clay in this passage refers to the children of Israel, who had strayed from God. The Potter is the Lord Himself. And even though the clay was spoiled, it pleased the Lord to remake His children into a new vessel.
This story captivates my heart immensely for I, too, was marred clay. I had two choices during this particular season of my life. I would either be shaped by my circumstances or refashioned by the Potter Himself. I chose to surrender my life to His care.
From years of sinful dwellings, I never imagined that a Holy God would desire to place me back on His wheel to refashion. Yet He did. And, even though I had no idea at the time what all that would entail, I knew one thing for sure; I was loved by a faithful God.
Remember, damaged clay in the hands of God can become His masterpiece.
Written by Shea Lowery