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IN TOUCH WITH GOD    by Edward Heppenstall

Faithful to Christ OCTOBER 15


He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. 1 Cor. 1:31.

The life of the apostle Paul is the story of a great man who lived to glorify God. He surrendered his private interests and personal reputation, and all chance of eminence in the Jewish hierarchy. His great desire to serve Christ and his fellow men rose above any desire to shine. "I count it so much garbage, for the sake of gaining Christ . . . , with no righteousness of my own, . . . but the righteousness which comes from faith in Christ" (Phil. 3:8, 9, N.E.B.).

This is a hard thing to do, especially if we have the ability to go to the top in almost anything we put our minds to. There are those who wish to exalt only Christ, and others who wish to shine and exalt themselves; those who seek to gain the attention of men and win their applause and favor, and those who humbly seek to reflect Christ and give glory to Him. There are on the one hand those who are ruled by ambition and on the other those who prefer to be used of God; those whose first aim is to be great and those whose first aim is to be Christlike; those who love fame and those who love people; those who covet honor from men and those who seek honor from God.

The sons of Zebedee, James and John, disciples of Christ, once sought great things for themselves, even the highest seats by the throne of God. Lucifer felt the same way.

Christ, however, "made himself of no reputation." He taught that the servant spirit fitted men for His service and His kingdom, that the only path to greatness was to live and work to the glory of God. The Jews believed they were the elect of God, and so they were. But the election was not to superiority or to salvation, but to service. Whoever wishes to rule must serve.

One of the major essentials of our time is to restore the servant spirit. If we are to live abundantly, we must become servants of the needy, a height to which no personal ambition, no love of fame, can ever lift us. The church can never in truth be the true church unless it takes seriously what it means to give glory to Him. Christ said of His life and work, "I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do" (John 17:-1).

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