How can I glorify God? What can I do to glorify God? How am I already glorifying God and not realizing it?
These were questions I used to ask myself all the time. I didn’t play any sports (contrary to popular belief I am somewhat athletic) so I couldn’t give the team the incredible prayer before and after the game giving God all the glory. In high school I was in theatre, but I was doing the tech back stage so I was never in the spotlight to give God the glory that was coming my way. I was just a normal kid, in a normal family, living a normal life being the best Catholic-Christian that I could be.
Once I got to college that trend continued, I got involved in the Catholic Campus Ministry, joined a fraternity, and various other organizations but never was able to answer my questions that were continually on my mind. I felt like I was doing something wrong because I had no idea how I was glorifying God, or if I even was glorifying God.
This past summer I was blessed to be able to serve as a summer missionary at Life Teen Camp Hidden Lake. While working at camp I was able to take a step back from my normal life and bring those questions that were in my mind to my heart and pray with them. I prayed that the Lord could reveal to me how I could glorify Him. Simple prayer that transformed my life once I was ready to listen.
After praying with that for a few days God kept speaking to me through different things. I kept finding myself meditating on scriptures with a common theme of kneeling at Jesus’ feet (Matthew 15:25), kissing Jesus’ feet (Luke 7:36-50), falling at Jesus’ feet (Luke 11:32), and being at the foot of the Cross (John 19:25-27). I did not realize this theme until I looked back at my journal and realized the Lord kept referencing Jesus’ feet or the foot of the cross. I was really confused for a while because praying and meditating on feet is not exactly the way I was expecting the Lord to speak to me, BUT boy did He shatter my expectations.
I really felt in my heart that God was telling me I need to throw everything at His feet, I need to deny myself and humble myself to His feet. I needed to lay my brokenness at His feet and at the foot of the Cross. I didn’t even realize how much I had to give Him until I started to give it to Him.
Once I was able to continually lay things that took over my heart at Christ’s feet I was able to realize who I really was. My identity was no longer in the things that were on my heart because there was nothing there. I was empty. My identity was in the only thing I had left, Christ himself. I finally was able to capture who God was calling me to be, His beloved son. And for the first time ever I believed that being His beloved son was enough.
Romans 8:15 affirmed that for me “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received the spirit of sonship. When we cry ‘Abba! Father!”’.
Me in my lack of wisdom was still confused on how this simple theological truth was supposed to answer my original question. I started to believe that to glorify God all I had to do was be who He created me to be. How much more glory can He get than by my being what He created me to be, his beloved Son. He continued to speak to me from a series of quotes I read from Thomas Merton that affirmed what He was already saying.
Merton says, “For me to be a saint means to be myself… who am I? I am one loved by Christ.”
Everyday I have to remind myself to glorify God in my identity in Him. It is a constant reminder that my identity is in Him and Him alone, and the best way to glorify Him is to continue to be who He has created me to be, His beloved son.
Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam