Reward.

I really love Keith Green's music. One of his most well-known songs is "O Lord, You're Beautiful." I've heard this song many a time, but most recently one specific line has been sticking out to me.

And when I'm doing well, help me to never seek a crown. For my reward is giving glory to you.

This is SO profound. In my own experience, it's sometimes difficult to give God the glory when everything is hunky-dory and when successes are a steady flow. When everything is all right, I'm tempted to give myself all the credit for accomplishing, achieving, and completing another successful conquest. I can often forget that God was the One who gave me the power and the strength to carry through to begin with.

I focus on the reward I earn for myself. I focus on my earthly gains. I focus on how my accomplishments make me feel more noteworthy, more accepted, more highly-esteemed. Yet, my reward is giving glory to God. OUR reward is giving glory to God.

He has given us EVERYTHING, and our lives are meant to reflect His strength to give Him the glory. If all is for His glory, why is it so easy for us to believe that our lives are for our own benefit and furthering? I think we feel so secure in what we accomplish that when we accomplish something, we feel like we are gaining greater control over our lives.

I hold so tightly to my earthly gains. I determine my success based on the fruit of what I can see. While our desire to see God moving in those around us is a beautiful desire to have, we can often allow our reward to be found in how much others appreciate us, rather than focusing on how much God values our hearts.

What a mindset and heart shift to truly believe and act like our reward is first to give glory to God. If we start to believe and act like God is our reward, then we never have to feel unfulfilled. God is our inheritance--He is our portion--and He will never let us run dry. If all is for His glory, we don't need to worry about defending our own strength, because we get to rest in His strength. Instead of focusing on building our own reputation, we realize that God is using us in order to make His reputation great through us. What a privilege.

"The LORD is my portion," says my soul, "therefore I will hope in him." ~Lamentations 3:24

Our reward is in Christ Himself! Amazing.

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