Do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering ... but rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ ... for the Spirit of glory ... rests on you. —1 Peter 4:12-14
God has a glory in mind for each of His people, whoever they are. It does not mean that you will necessarily be famous or a great thinker, a great speaker, a singer, a politician, a doctor, an accountant, a theologian, or a philosopher. But God wants to make you great.
The point is that your glory is true spirituality, and it comes through tribulation: "We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God" (Acts 14:22).
Although your gift under God could lead to greatness even in the eyes of men, it will never be apart from your receiving the glory that He has assigned for you. For God has a glory in mind for you, and that is that you become a truly spiritual person, an unpretentious person like Jesus.
When we are pretentious, people can see it, and yet we do not have any objectivity about ourselves. We go right on trying to pretend how clever, brilliant, sophisticated, or cultured we are, but that is not spirituality. Peter said, "Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time" (1 Pet. 5:6). Unless you become humble, unpretentious, and truly spiritual, all that you seek to do will not amount to a hill of beans.
When we speak of the glory of Christ, we are talking about the sum total or essence of all that He was; you could actually refer to Jesus, properly, as "His Glory." In fact, Paul called the very gospel that we preach, "the gospel of the glory of Christ" (2 Cor. 4:4).
Excerpted from Meekness and Majesty (Christian Focus Publications Ltd., 1992, 2000).
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