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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Who's Getting the Glory?

It’s funny how two things can look very similar but be completely different.

A few weeks ago I attended a secular rock concert. Most concerts that I attend are in the genre of Christian music. Usually, I can’t justify paying the ticket prices for anyone else. But I really like this particular band. Their lyrics are not offensive, and the tickets were free.

From the second row, the show was quite a feast for the senses. The band had an elaborate set-up and pumped out tunes energetically for nearly two hours. It was interesting to look around and see an arena full of people singing along and cheering. Between songs, the applause and screams for the lead singer and his entourage were so loud he could hardly talk over them.

How cool that must be, I found myself thinking.

I can’t imagine having that many people cheering so enthusiastically for you, not to mention being willing to pay money just to see you.

That’s when that still small voice spoke to me. He spoke with a whisper, but I heard Him loud and clear over the roar of the crowd.

They have already received their reward in full.
                                                                                                          
Ouch! That will surely make you reconsider the allure of fortune and fame.

As I mulled that thought over, I wondered if the band members were truly satisfied with their lives. Their music is enjoyable and they are providing entertainment to crowds all over the nation, but are they doing anything that will last? What happens years from now when they are gone and their albums have been relegated to the shelves of an old music collection?

Then I thought back to the numerous Christian concerts I have attended. On the surface, they looked nearly identical to the rock show that I was enjoying: loud music, multi-colored strobe lights, an energetic band, and people waving their arms and singing along.

But the two are very different. In one case, the musicians were performing to glorify themselves. In the other one, the artists were there to bring glory to God.

The same principle applies to us. We may not all be rock stars, but God has given each of us talents. He leaves it up to us to choose how to use them.

While our actions may look very admirable on the surface – commitment to our jobs, acts of service within our churches, kindness extended to less fortunate members of our community – God looks at our hearts. Are we doing those things to please Him, or are we looking to garner some attention for ourselves?

As Christians we should remember that we are working for Someone and something bigger than us.

Scripture warns us that if we live for recognition on earth, that may be all the reward we receive.

"Be careful not to do your 'acts of righteousness' before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven” (Matthew 6:1).

However, if we seek first to glorify God, He has promised that an eternal reward is waiting for us in heaven.

Which reward means more to you, the approval of man or the approval of your Heavenly Father?

 

 

 

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