Seven Words of Conviction
This morning Jen handed me a verse to read. She usually does her Bible reading at night and I do mine in the morning, so my reading is often a hand-me-down from her: Hey, you gotta read this.
The verse she suggested is only seven words long but hit me like a wrecking ball. I’ve been thinking about it all morning and it will no doubt bounce around in my head all day. It raises some tough questions, challenging questions, probing questions. Life-changing questions.
It’s one of those verses that I’ve probably read umpteen times and just passed right over but this time it jumped off the page and grabbed me by the ears (you know the feeling). And it is especially applicable to me right now with what I’ve been going through, with what we’ve been going through.
Okay, okay, I’ve kept you in suspense long enough. Galatians 1:24–And they praised God because of me.
Wow. That’s Paul speaking of course and through the centuries his words bring with it a challenge. Is my life causing others to praise God? Is the way I’m handling this trial, this cancer thing, prompting others to give praise to God? What’s my testimony? How’s my witness? How am I observed by the eyes of others? Not because I’m concerned with what man thinks (earlier in the chapter, verse 10, Paul asks another probing question: Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God?), but because my life should be a testimony to the greatness and faithfulness of God no matter what the circumstances. My life should cause others to praise God not because of anything I’ve done, but because they can see the power of God and the faithfulness of God at work in my life. And that should cause others to praise Him.
Seven words. And they praised God because of me. Is my life leading others to praise God?