“Glory be to God, our Father”—so says Apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippians. It`s a very old idea, to glorify the one God who has made and created everything - in other words, to publicly praise His power and proclaim His immeasurable kindness. And yet, human beings have diverged from this practice again and again. In fact, they have even gone so far as to hold God responsible for all their problems in life!
My appeal to you today is: let us glorify God, our Father!
This is not only to be our motto for the year 2017, but is also to define our path ahead in both life and faith.
How are we to glorify God, the Father? I would like to mention three examples.
1. Let us recognize the greatness of God! He is the Creator from whom everything has emanated, both the visible creation and the whole of salvation history. It is our task to treat His creation with wisdom and kindness. God has provided all the natural resources, but the responsibility for their distribution and preservation rests with us human beings.
2. Let us express our gratitude to Him for His gifts by doing His will even if this makes our lives more difficult. Let us bring Him offerings. Let us put greater trust in Him, rather than complain about our cares. He cares for us even though we are sinners. In return, let us respect the dignity of every person. God is the Father of all! We glorify our Father when we pray for those who have hurt us and even ask Him to grant them salvation.
3. Let us proclaim His glory by behaving like children of God. In God’s eyes we are like children: we know very little and He knows everything. It is important for us to acknowledge His authority and be prepared to serve Him. We do not see this as a restriction of our own freedom, but rather as a source of blessing!
Let us glorify God, our Father: He is greater than everything. Nothing can prevent Him from giving us His kingdom. His life, which He has laid into us, is meant to develop and grow. In so doing we will contribute to the oneness among His children in the knowledge that there is only one God and Father “who is above all, and through all, and in you all”.
Our agenda for 2017 consists of three tasks:
- to recognize the glory of God the Father in His works.
- to thank Him for His gifts.
- to proclaim His glory by behaving like children of God.
To this end, I wish you a great deal of joy and divine blessing in the new year!