Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Glory to God for all things?

So, don't get me wrong. I am not having a mid-life crisis or anything, neither mid-life nor crisis describes me right now, but here is my question.

are we really supposed to say and believe that we give Glory to God for ALL things? everything we do, good and bad, we say, "Glory to God" ?


good things, thats easy to imagine or live or believe, but bad things too?

7 comments:

rowena said...
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cathedral dweller said...

Question - What do you mean by "bad?" A lot hinges on what you mean by that word.

If by bad you mean things that are difficult, traumatic, hard, etc then the answer is, yes, we should give glory to God for all things.

One could debate what giving glory to God in all things would look like. Psalms of lamentation and OT prophets always ascribe glory to God even while they complain and ask God "how long?" And asking "how long" is not rhetorical or metaphorical it's a real question and in asking the question there is a giving of glory to God that simultaneously expresses our experience of the situation and trust in God's ultimate intentions.

It seems to me there are a lot of ways to give glory to God for all things.

Paul said...

I think Dave was meaning should we give glory to God for the bad things we do, not the bad things that happen to us. And I'm interested in some thoughts on this one, too.

Matthew Francis said...

"Glory to God for All Things," were the dying words of St. John Chrysostom, when he had been forceably deposed from his episcopate and marched to death in Armenia.

I'm with cathedral dweller. When Achan stole the consecrated items during the conquest, Joshua told him to "give glory to God," and by this he simply meant to tell the truth, fess up, and repent of his sin. But the words he spoke were literally "give glory to God." This leads me to believe that this was sort of short-hand, biblically, for doing the right thing.

It would seem sort of inhuman to me, for instance, to start lavishly praising God, for instance, immediately after a loved one dies. To use Matthew Davidson's phrase, that would seem like a sort of 'emotional legalism.' Honest mourning would be more truthful.

Neverless, even in the midst of pain (even that which we cause) there is an awareness of God's presence and solidarity. Depending on our soul's condition, that can be either to our "healing," or "judgment." If our heart can say "glory to God," than I think that's a sign we're more solidly on the road to healing than to condemnation.

rowena said...
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elizabeth said...

i think praying the Akathist (written by fr lawrence) Jesus Light in Darkness will help with this question... if it is still on sale in the st herman's bookstore, and you do not have it/have not prayed with it, i recommend it... i think it is a way to learn how to do what was meant in this saying... without the emotional legalism etc...

Krista said...

I think that we are called to give glory to God for the mysteries behind our own understanding of the things going on in our lives and around us...a sort of letting go. Glory to God that He knows and He knows we don't sometimes. Giving glory has so many meanings....to trust, to give thanks, to praise and first and foremost to pray to and acknowledge him day in and day out. We must give glory for the small things and the big things in life...in giving you receive..So to give glory for something so called "bad" means (perhaps giving glory isn't the right wording in this context) that we acknowledge that God is in control and we submit to his Will and no longer our own. We are willing to see what He has for our lives even if it means that at times we may have to endure suffering, etc.