I asked that His Name would be glorified in our day. It was a usual petition, a common desire.
Armed with my little prayer, we embarked upon the day. The internal expectation was that before me was a peachy day, one of ease and obedient children. He would be glorified in our familial happiness, in our smooth schedule, our orderly tasks. He would go before us, removing every stone, straightening the curves, evening the hills. God would receive all the glory for an exemplary home.
Except the day was an absolute mess. Every plan was frustrated. Every work delayed. Relationships strained, wisdom dried up, the juggling gig a failure. I felt inhumane, a mere existing shell battling anger and frustration, disappointment and stress.
“And your glory, dear God? Where is your glory now?”
And that was when I realized with horror that my prayer had been for me, not for the God of Heaven. The desire for His glory flowed basely from a spring that bubbled with my own selfish ease and pride, as if He would be most glorified through an imaginary perfect day.
His glory was instead found in every moment of mortification of sin, in every instance of temperance and patience. He was glorified not in my providence, but in His own being reverenced and submitted to.
He knows so well my long to-do list. He counts the seconds of my day. He sees the external responsibilities, the internal commitments, the pushes and pulls of every child of God. If He prevents or allows work being done, that is in His holy providence.
Why do we still fight so hard against His guiding hand? Is that not exactly the junction where frustration flares the brightest? Upon the occurrence of any disappointment, large or small, I have two opposing choices. I can mutter and huff to the wind over the unfairness of life, or I can quietly submit this change to my God of providential wisdom and trust He will continue to order my day and life in the way that will truly bring Him glory. Oh how often I have given in to the first! It is with shame I confess how rarely I have fully committed my way to the Lord or sung with true pleasure: my times are in your hand, Father, I wish them there.
The next day also held its disappointments. Lots of them–as will every single day. God receives greater glory in the days of deeper submission, of freer letting-go. The Father is glorified, Christ is glorified when fallen sons of Adam rise victorious from the mire with ‘Christ in me’ imprinted on their souls.
I often think of the Lord, going apart to a lonely place to pray and the people following Him. Truly He is the Great High Priest who has been tried in every point as we are. In that moment, He opened the way for every weary housewife, every overtaxed public servant, into the deep quarries of grace found in the providence of God.
If Providence and Glory are God’s portion, may mine be peace and joy.
3 thoughts on “Providence and Glory”
An excellent post. A challenge for us all.
Thank you… I needed this.