Perhaps you have heard the phrase, “only for the glory of God.” This is a theme that runs through the entire Bible, that all of creation exists for His glory. If this is true, then God created your family to glorify Him. What exactly is “the glory of God?”
We see God’s glory in the desert after He brought His people out of Egypt. “When Moses went up on the mountain, the cloud covered it, and the glory of the Lord settled on top of the mountain … the glory of the Lord looked like a consuming fire on top of the mountain” (Exodus 24:15-17). On Christmas night, the glory of the Lord appears again. “And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field … and an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear” (Luke 2:8-9).
In the desert wilderness, the glory of the Lord was like a fire. In Bethlehem, it was a light that shone all around. But it would be incorrect to say that the fire was God, or that the light was God. Rather, the fire and the light pointed to the reality of God, highlighting His presence and His power. In the same way, the shepherds, after they had seen Jesus “returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had seen and heard.”
To glorify something is to highlight it, to point to it, to reveal its power and reality. Or in less formal language, to glorify something is to make it look good!
So let’s put this all together. God created your family to glorify Him! What does that mean? God created your family to highlight Him, to point to Him, and to reveal His power and reality. Your family exists to make God look good! We can incorporate this mission and vision into everything we do in our homes.
- How can we parent in this situation in a way that will make God look good?
- How can I handle conflict with my spouse in a way that will make God look good?
- How can we use this project or opportunity to make God look good?
- How can we handle our family finances to make God look good to a lost world?
- In what specific ways can we invest our time this year so that people from another part of the world might see God’s power and reality through our family?
In fact, everything we do can highlight, point to, and reveal the love and power of God. God tells us in 1 Corinthians 10:31, “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
This is a journey of grace, for “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Because of our ongoing struggle with sin, we fall short in doing what we were created to do – highlighting, pointing to, and revealing the true nature of our Creator.
Talk about these Scriptures as a family. Explain to your children what it means to “glorify God,” rather than leaving it out there as some vague, churchy phrase that your children may hear but don’t understand. Give some examples to help them. How could they make God look good if someone is being picked on at school? Talk with your child about how their words and actions “reveal” or “show” who God is to their friends who don’t know Jesus.
Then pray daily for God to use your family to glorify Him, to make Him look good, beginning in your home, and then overflowing in your neighborhood and to the ends of the earth.
About the Author: Dr. Rob Rienow’s most important ministry is loving his wife, Amy, and partnering with her to lead their seven children to love God. He is a pastor, author of Visionary Parenting, and founder of Visionary Family Ministries (VisionaryFam.com). Connect with Rob at firstname.lastname@example.org.