9 "... this is the glory of all his faithful people. Praise the Lord."
Psalm 149:9 (NIV)
As people learn to do sport well, there's more and more glory generated. Crowds gather. People watch. Attendance swells. Advertising dollars grow. Free gear flows. Television cameras zoom in and satellite dishes push out. Praise awaits its distribution.
Indeed, we manufacture glory when we grow our performance. As this happens we innately try to slice off glory for ourselves to further feed our performance drive. The glory feels so good and necessary to the whole process of performance growth.
God has something profound to say about how we play the glory game. He calls timeout in Psalm 149 to show us a different approach, a better way to handle things. He says that the glory we receive should move this way:
DEFLECTION/REFLECTION. Glory cannot land with us because it's not really ours. It's His. It rightfully belongs to our Maker and King. (v2) Therefore, to take and keep glory is to steal it. We must only deflect it, reflect it, once it comes our way. That's why God repeatedly asks us to sing new songs about Him, to Him, praising Him for our victories. Pushing up the praise is the proper path. (Note 1 Corinthians 4:7 as well.)
MORE MOTIVATION FOR SELFLESS SERVICE. Glory received must drive us to more selfless service. That's the proper way to leverage glory. God wants us to go out and fight for the honor of His Name, to make Him famous, not us. Making Him famous fulfills the greatest purpose for which we've been created. It's not about me.
So, when God's Word says, "THIS is the glory of all His saints," it means God glories in us when we deflect and reflect the glory we receive, when we push it around and up, and when we leverage our personal glory only to move us to greater selfless service.
Prayer to consider today: O Jesus, You played the glory game so well. Help me to be like You, deflecting and reflecting glory, driven by selfless service to a watching world that surely needs You.