You might not believe this, but it was in the late 40’s, I was a teen, just getting a taste of church, and they asked me to go “Harvest Ingathering.” They piled Mrs. Baker and her wheezy pump organ on the back of a flatbed truck and we headed out for a quiet neighborhood in Yakima, Washington, with the promise of hot chocolate when we got back. Mrs. Baker pumped for all she was worth, and we sang our hearts out – all 20 or more of us. When they heard me sing they quickly promoted me to door-to-door solicitor (we were raising money for missions), but not before there was seared into my memory bank the words, “When by His grace I shall look on His face, that will be glory, glory for me.” It was the song on which we sounded the least dissonant.
It wasn’t until years later that I began to discover the heresy in that song. Glory for me? No! Glory for Him. Joy for me? Yes! Indescribable. Thrill for me? Absolutely. Beyond measure. Excitement for me? Off the chart. Gratitude? Beyond words. But not glory for me. That all goes to Him. It isn’t something I did that got me there. It’s what He did. No one is going to rush up to me and say, “Good job, Don, you made it.” No, it’s totally about Him.
Everything is about Him. Prayer is about Him. It’s not about getting my needs met, it’s about participating with Him in His universe-wide project to accomplish His will. Church is about Him. It’s not so I can sit in judgment on the speaker or the music, or the length of Mrs. Edward’s skirt. It’s about Him. So I can praise Him in the midst of His family. So He can speak to me and change me with the ennobling influence of His presence. We sing some gospel songs (they describe our journey) but mainly we sing praise to Him. God inhabits the praises of His people and we want to meet Him here.
The second coming is about Him. It’s not just to rescue me from a ravaged planet, it’s because His heart aches to get all the family back together. He hurts when we hurt. Multiply that by the anguish and despair in most of the 7.2 billion hearts beating daily on planet earth. Tithing is about Him. He doesn’t need my money, but He is keenly committed to seeing unselfish traits develop in his children, and sacrificial giving starves covetousness to death. Healthy living is about Him. It’s not about what I like that I have to give up, it’s so I can exhibit the radiant good health that will allow me to bring Him glory. Go through the list; it’s all about Him. So, instead of, “That will be glory for me,” how about we change the song to “…Down at the cross was the blood applied, Glory to His Name!”