Monday, April 5, 2021

The Glory of God

By Cathy Ramsey 

Today, as I have been contemplating God’s sacrifice, Jesus’s suffering for us, and the magnificence of God’s plan to give us everlasting life, the glory of God came to mind. God is perfect, God is beautiful, God is the epitome of love, God is glorious. Sometimes, when I am talking to God, the glory of God is not my foremost thought. I am thinking about my problems or concerns. Today, it is on my heart to understand and immerse myself in the glory of God.

2 Corinthians 4:6 – For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Isaiah 60:1 - Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.

Jesus, the son of God, lowered himself to become a human and to live on earth as humans live on earth. He lived to speak God’s word, to earn followers of God, to teach followers of God. He lived to save us all from death. He lived to redeem us and lead to spending eternity living in the kingdom of God. He did not have an easy life. The suffering he endured was unimaginable. He gave glory to God and redemption to all those who believe in him.

The glory of God – What is it?

The dictionary definition of "glory" often describes it as great praise, splendor, or honor. The glory of God is the splendor that comes from Him. Psalm 19:1 states, "The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork." Here the word glory is used in parallel with "handiwork" or His power or greatness.

Psalm 106:20 speaks of the "glory of God" in this way as well, saying, "They exchanged the glorious God for the image of an ox that eats grass." Here, the glory of God is the greatness of who He is. Proverbs 25:2 adds, "It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out." Again, this glory is God's greatness or splendor.

In the New Testament, Jesus speaks of the glory of God, sharing, "This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it" (John 11:4; also verse 40). In this context, Jesus spoke of resurrecting Lazarus from death. This act would bring glory to God and glorify Jesus.

In Acts 7:55, Stephen looked into heaven just before his death and saw the glory of God. In this context, it referred to the greatness of God in heaven.

In Romans, the phrase "glory of God" is used three times. Romans 3:23 says all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Romans 5:2 speaks of the glory of God in the sense of His greatness. Romans 15:7 shares, "Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God." In this passage, the glory of God is used in the sense of honoring God.

The glory of God is emphasized in several places throughout Paul's other writings. In particular, he notes in 1 Corinthians 10:31, "So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." Here again, the glory of God refers to honoring God with one's life.

Hebrews 1:3 uses the phrase in another way, sharing, "He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power." The author notes Jesus as the radiance of God's glory.

Revelation expresses God's glory in three clear passages. First, Revelation 15:8 speaks of the sanctuary being filled with the glory of God. Revelation 21:11 notes the glory of God coming from the New Jerusalem. Revelation 21:23 adds that the glory of God serves as the light for the city.

Overall, the glory of God is used in a variety of ways in Scripture. It can refer to God's greatness, His honor, His beauty, His power, and His light. In every case, the glory of God acknowledges the Lord's supreme strength and our need to both acknowledge and serve Him. (Source:

By Clarence L. Haynes, Jr.:

“We began with what really is a loaded question: what is the glory of God? It is not loaded because it is a trick question, it is loaded because it has so many answers. How do you take the one who is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, eternal, holy, glorious, and try to wrap all that glory into an answer? It is hard to do.

I hope you see that God’s glory goes far beyond even our human comprehension. I fully believe it will take eternity to fully understand and experience the wonder of God’s glory. My final thought is to point you to heaven and our eternal home. Here is a glimpse of the reality of the glory of God.

And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. … I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp” (Revelation 21:10-11; 22-23).

May we live lives that truly honor Him and bring the glory to His name that it so richly deserves.”


From a sermon by Professor Finney, December 20, 1843:

“Nothing can make us stable Christians, but to behold his glory, a revelation of Him to us. No excitement, no intellectual acumen, no strength of logic, nothing can secure us but a revelation of God to our souls. We should therefore persevere and insist that this be done for us, that we see God's glory, and be fixed on Him. The church should pray that God would reveal to them the deep secrets of his love and mercy; that He would open to them the everflowing fountains of exquisite and perennial blessedness to let them drink therefrom and never thirst more. O do the churches think and feel how much they can do, by praying the heavens open, and letting down on their hearts such rays of glory as shall forever enrapture and hold them in awful apprehension of God's presence and character, as that the spirit of the Highest shall come upon them, and the power of God overshadow them, and transform them from men of clay, to angels of mercy and power to a fallen world? Why do they not pray? Brethren, why do you not pray--pray that God would show you, would show the students here, the community, the whole church in the land, and in the world, his glory?

Please listen to this beautiful rendition of “To God Be the Glory” and “My Redeemer”. It moves me to tears of gratefulness and of reverence to God’s everlasting and uncompromising, unconditional love and support to those who believe in Him.

 John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.



Friday, April 2, 2021

3 O'Clock Prayer

Excerpt from the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, submitted by Donna Winchell



Sister Faustina who died of tuberculosis at age 33 suffering greatly in her final years, was a young, uneducated nun in a convent of the Congregation of Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Poland during the 1930s.  She received extraordinary revelations — or messages — from our Lord Jesus.  Jesus asked Sr. Faustina to record these experiences, which she compiled into notebooks.  These notebooks are known today as the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, and the words contained within are God's loving message of Divine Mercy………..

At 3 O’Clock on Good Friday, Jesus died in incomprehensible agony on the wooden Cross which the Roman soldiers had nailed Him to. The soldier appointed to watch the bodies checked if the three whom they had crucified were still alive, but when he examined Jesus, he discovered Jesus had already died. So he did not break His legs, which was a Roman custom, thereby fulfilling the prophecy "Not one of his bones will be broken" (Psalm 34). Instead, he took a spear and pierced His sacred body, driving the iron blade into His Merciful Heart. As he withdrew the spear, there followed a gush of blood and water. The soldier was shocked and gave witness to St. John, the beloved disciple of Jesus, of this event. It is this moment which changed the world forever, and it is this prayer that commemorates that extraordinary moment.

The red and pale white rays emanating from the Heart of Jesus in the Image of Divine Mercy represent the blood and water which gushed forth from His pierced Heart on Good Friday. Jesus asked that all who venerate His mercy honour His Passion by remembering Him with this prayer at 3 O’Clock in the afternoon.

He asks us, “If only for a brief moment, immerse yourself in My Passion, particularly in My abandonment at the moment of agony”. (Diary 1320) At this moment, He asks us to implore His Mercy, especially for sinners. He told St. Faustina, "as often as you hear the clock strike the third hour, immerse yourself completely in My mercy, adoring and glorifying it; invoke its omnipotence for the whole world, and particularly for poor sinners; for at that moment, mercy was opened wide for every soul". (Diary 1572)

The short prayer which Jesus taught St. Faustina for the veneration of His Mercy at 3 O’Clock is, “O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a Fount of Mercy for us, I trust in You”.

This is also known as the Conversion Prayer. Jesus told St. Faustina, "I desire that you know more profoundly the love that burns in My Heart for souls, and you will understand this when you meditate upon My Passion. Call upon My mercy on behalf of sinners; I desire their salvation. When you say this prayer, with a contrite heart and with faith on behalf of some sinner, I will give him the grace of conversion. This is the prayer: “O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of Mercy for us, I trust in You.” (Diary 186-187)

St. Faustina also created her own prayer for this moment, which is: You expired, Jesus, but the source of life gushed forth for souls, and the ocean of mercy opened up for the whole world. O Fount of Life, unfathomable Divine Mercy, envelop the whole world and empty Yourself out upon us. (Diary 1319)

Jesus asked, that as often as we “hear the clock strike the third hour” that we deeply contemplate His Passion, “if only for a brief moment”.

But after we observe the moment of the death of the Messiah at 3 O’Clock with this special prayer, we then have before us “the hour of great mercy for the whole world”. (Diary 1320)

Jesus has let us know that in Heaven, the 3 O’Clock hour is a special holy hour, as He said, "it was the hour of grace for the whole world — mercy triumphed over justice."

So there are two distinct parts to the 3 O’Clock hour. The first is the moment of the death of Jesus at 3 O’Clock. We immerse ourselves in the Passion of Jesus and pray with great love and gratitude to Him, thanking Him for His love for us. We say the short prayer and offer it for sinners. The second part of this holy hour is the prayer and meditation during this Holy Hour. As He has told us, it is the hour of great mercy for the world and He has promised that He will refuse nothing to the soul who makes a request of His grace in virtue of His Passion.

3 o'clock prayer song

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Seek the Son

 By Kathy Carlton Willis, submitted by Barb Batt

So that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us.

Acts 17:27 (NKJV)

I never knew dogs were natural heat seekers! At just fourteen weeks old, Mijo the Boston terrier taught me a valuable life lesson.

Mijo (MEE-hoe) learned what time of day the sun shone through our front door. Every day, like clockwork, he stopped whatever he was doing to get to his sunny spot. There he enjoyed leisurely naps wrapped in the warmth of the sunbeams.

One day, he spent the early hours playing outdoors. Suddenly, even though he was having a good time, he urgently wanted to go inside. Once I opened the door, he darted past me. Curious to see where he went, I followed him through the house. Wouldn't you know that Mijo had already found his place in the sun, and his snores sounded like a chainsaw!

By simply replacing the word sun with Son, I pondered several lessons. It is good to get in the habit of seeking the Son. The warmth of Jesus's embrace is all I need. I grow closer to Jesus when I seek the Son early and daily, like clockwork. I can develop the habit, just as Mijo did. It is second nature for him to look for the sun. Is it second nature for me to daily look for the Son?

Not only does the Son provide warm, welcoming intimacy; He also gives me rest when I come to Him. Mijo fell asleep right away when he hunkered down in the warmth of the sunbeams. I can find that same instant rest in Jesus. And not just physically, but emotionally, mentally, and spiritually, as well. When I rest in Jesus, I can put all other thoughts to rest. No more doing or striving, just being - all found in the Son.

 "There is greater rest and solace to be found in the presence of God for one hour, than in an eternity of the presence of man."

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

And Can It Be

Submitted by Marilyn Travis



"And Can It Be That I Should Gain?" is a Christian hymn written by Charles Wesley. This hymn is considered one of the best-loved of Wesley's six thousand hymns, written in 1738 to celebrate Wesley's conversion to Christianity. Find the lyrics below.

And can it be that I should gain
An int'rest in the Savior's blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, should die for me?


Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, should die for me!

'Tis mystery all! Th'Immortal dies!
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine!
'Tis mercy all! let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more. [Refrain]

He left His Father's throne above,
So free, so infinite His grace;
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam's helpless race;
'Tis mercy all, immense and free;
For, O my God, it found out me. [Refrain]

Long my imprisoned spirit lay
Fast bound in sin and nature's night;
Thine eye diffused a quick'ning ray,
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free;
I rose, went forth and followed Thee. [Refrain]

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him is mine!
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th'eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own. [Refrain]


I also want to share a beautiful song, “An Easter Hallelujah,” sung by Cassandra Star and her sister Callahan. God bless each of you. 

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Thoughts on Resurrection

Submitted by Brooke Momblow

“Jesus set apart the week before His crucifixion to remind His disciples that death wouldn’t win, and His Kingdom would never end. But because they didn’t understand what was coming, they didn’t realize He was also telling them 'I love you' and 'goodbye.'

"Today, Holy Week is a reminder that God isn’t finished. Because even in those moments when our expectations crumble—hope is still coming. God is not done.”          


When Resurrection Takes Time

Ruth Haley Barton, Transforming Center

Used by Permission.

“The way of possibility is the way of going through.” John S. Dunne

It’s a good thing Easter is a season and not just a day because some resurrections take time. Like the coming of spring, some resurrections happen gradually; they are not overnight sensations. And yet somehow, we need to experience these as miracles too.

Fortunately, the Easter season (fifty days, eight Sundays, seven weeks—however you want to look at it) is longer than Lent because there are some areas of our lives where resurrection takes longer than dying. The Church calendar itself teaches us that “the implications of the resurrection—its explosive force—call for an extended period of exploration and appropriation.”* For us mere mortals, Easter cannot be done in a day.

To help celebrate the slower and yet no-less-miraculous resurrections we experience (or long to experience) in this life, we offer this poem from our beloved A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and Other Servants.


Long, long, long ago;
Way before this winter’s snow
First fell upon these weathered fields;
I used to sit and watch and feel
And dream of how the spring would be,
When through the winter’s stormy sea
She’d raise her green and growing head,
Her warmth would resurrect the dead.

 Long before this winter’s snow
I dreamt of this day’s sunny glow
And thought somehow my pain would pass
With winter’s pain, and peace like grass
Would simply grow.  The pain’s not gone.
It’s still as cold and hard and long
As lonely pain has ever been,
It cuts so deep and fear within.

Long before this winter’s snow
I ran from pain, looked high and low
For some fast way to get around
Its hurt and cold.  I’d have found,
If I had looked at what was there,
That things don’t follow fast or fair.
That life goes on, and times do change,
And grass does grow despite life’s pains.

Long before this winter’s snow
I thought that this day’s sunny glow,
The smiling children and growing things
And flowers bright were brought by spring.
Now I know the sun does shine,
That children smile, and from the dark, cold, grime
A flower comes. It groans, yet sings,
And through its pain, its peace begins.

Mary Ann Bernard. From Rueben Job and Norman Shawchuck, eds., A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and Other Servants (Nashville, TN: The Upper Room, 1983) p. 144.

*Bobby Gross, Living the Church Year (Downers Grove, IL:  InterVarsity Press, 2009) p. 95.

©Ruth Haley Barton, 2011. Not to be reproduced without permission. Ruth is the founder of the Transforming Center. As spiritual director, teacher and retreat leader, she is the author of numerous articles, books, and resources on the spiritual life.

 Arise My Love: