I confess that I do a lot of thinking about me, my situation, my needs, my wants and my desires. Can you relate? I don't like to admit it but I am selfish to the core. It is the human condition and only Jesus can tear open our hearts for unselfish living - bit by bit as we come to grips with the fact that as Christ followers life is not ultimately about us!
Jesus made a profound statement as he contemplated his own death. He confessed, "Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? 'Father, save me from this hour?' No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name!" (John 12:27-28).
How often do we ask God to save us from some dilemma, to remove some suffering, to heal some illness - all legitimate requests. But how often do we say, "Father, glorify your name through my situation?" Ultimately, it is His glory that is paramount, not our desires. Sometimes His glory is in answering our prayers. Sometimes His glory is found in our faith in the middle of crushing difficulty.
Just before Jesus asked the Father to glorify His name, He reminded His disciples that "unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me (John 12:24-26)."
It is in our dying to self in order to live for God that we see our lives honor and glorify Him. It is in putting His interests first - choosing to live our lives with His priorities in mind that we glorify the Father. It is in following Him wherever He is and wherever He desires to take us that we glorify Him. It is in remaining faithful in the hard times, choosing faith and hope over despair and hopelessness that I lift His name up!
We have many requests for God. We depend on Him for our daily bread in so many ways. But ultimately He desires that we care about His glory. His glory in our lives is the greatest gift that we can give Him.
"Father, what needs to die in me today so that my life produces many seeds? Would you glorify your name through me today no matter what my circumstances?"