How do we bring Glory to God? Is it something even achievable in today’s complex world? Has it changed since the time of the early church?


We have been in this series during the season of lent. Each week we are studying an aspect of Jesus’ prayer life. So far we have seen

  • In Luke 10 Jesus prayer of praise about God revealing himself to the disciples
  • Matthew 6:5-15 we saw how if we pray in public for praise that will be our reward, but if we pray sincerely to God he will reward those prayers
  • We saw Luke 18:9-14 and the juxtaposition of the pharisee’s egotistical prayers compared to the humble prayer of a text collector and our call to pray humbly.
  • Last week Biblical Scholar Brian Russell taught about finding God in the stillness as we reflected on Psalm 46 “be still and know that I am God” and we also heard about Jesus withdrawing to secluded places.

Context of Scripture

From here on out in our series we are going to be moving closer to Christ’s death on the cross. In our passage today we are meeting Jesus during Holy Week. In church language this is called the passion or the suffering and death of Christ.

The disciples have come up to Jesus to talk to Christ about some other men wanting to meet with him… here is what happens in:

John 12:20-30

23 Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. 24 Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. 25 Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.

27 “Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name!” [read out loud together]

Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.

30 Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine.

May God add His blessing to the reading of His Word.

Glorifying God, but How?

The Humanity of Jesus

This passage reveals something about Christ. It highlights Jesus’ humanity. In Roman and Greek stories of heroism you would not want to have the hero show vulnerability. Yet, Jesus does this when he says, “My soul is troubled.”

Jesus knew “the hour had come”. That the purpose of the incarnation, the purpose of ministry was upon him. Since Jesus is fully God and fully human he experiences emotion like we all do. That alone is worth pondering. There is no emotion or heartache that Christ has not experienced.

And what is Christ’s response? Does he call down angels to help Him? Does he ask for an extension until His assignment is due? Does he reign down fire from heaven to defend himself?

He says, “Father, glorify Your name!” Jesus chooses to lean into bringing the purpose for His life, to bring to God glory.

How do we Bring Glory?

So how do we respond like Christ? How can we become people who can pray with authenticity, “God Glorify your name”? How can we say God we want to “praise, extol, magnify, celebrate” Your Name?

Let us reflect on how we can actually bring Glory to God. Later on the New Testament in 1 Corinthians 10:31 the apostle Paul says, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”

Anything we do can be done for God’s glory. Small menial tasks can be done for the glory of God. 

Have you ever seen a carpenter at their work bench? That’s what I feel like when I am at my desk making sentences for God’s glory. I bring God glory when I write powerful sermons, give direction to the church, or write someone a letter. But what about the other time?

The truth is anything can be done for the Glory of God.

  • Grocery shopping can be done for God’s glory
  • Taking care of your body with a doctor’s appointment can be done for God’s glory
  • Dropping your children off can be done to the glory of God
  • Sending an encouraging text message to someone can be done to the glory of God.

It does not have to be something big to bring Glory to God. Small tasks or moments throughout the day with an attitude of praise can be done for God

Another Guide

Our membership vows can also be a helpful reminder in bringing Glory to God. The Global Methodist Church Exists “to make disciples of Jesus Christ who worship passionately, love extravagantly, and witness boldly.”

When members join one of the questions we ask is:

Will you be loyal to Christ through the Glennville Methodist Church and do all in your power to strengthen its ministries through your prayers, your presence, your gifts, your service, and your witness as Christ’s representative in this world?

When we fulfill our vows we bring Glory to God because we

  • Pray for God’s help, and for those in need.
  • We are present in the community of faith and worship.
  • We use our gifts to bless the church financially to make a Kingdom impact.
  • We serve God and neighbor through our many powerful service ministries like our upcoming Easter basket giveaway or our thrift store open yesterday.
  • We witness by offering an example of what it means to be a Christ-follower in the world today. This done with an example of our life. It is also done by sharing verbally how God has made a difference in our life. Like Mrs. Leanne Durrence did at our prayer conference. Sarah Thighpen with her testimony this past Wednesday night. Mary Catherine Banks gave a written testimony on the cover of the church newsletter the Vessel.

Ultimately, when we bring Glory to God it makes us the most happy. There is a pastor named John Piper. Now, I do not agree with everything he teaches but there is some good stuff in there. One thing Piper is known for is this idea of Christian hedonism. 

Hedonism simply means living for self doing whatever you want. Piper argues for Christian hedonism which he says means this, “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.”1

The happier we are in God the more glory we can bring Him.

It Can Be Hard

I will be the first to admit, it can be hard to bring Glory to God in tough times. 

Jesus sweated drops of blood the night he was arrested.

Many of you are facing tough times.

  • Health challenges
  • Marital Struggles
  • Worry about children, grandchildren, parents, or grandparents
  • The loss of a loved one

If you are going through tough times like this I want you to hear this. We are here for you. You are not alone. We are in your corner.

Most importantly God is in your corner. The incarnation means God knows everything you go through.

The Gospel

The Gospel is the story of how Jesus died for our sins. None of us can perfectly bring Glory to God. God has given us grace. We do not have to worry about whether we are bringing God enough Glory to be loved by Him. No, we enjoy God in a response to the revelation of the life changing Good News.

C.S. Lewis said, “In commanding us to glorify him, God is inviting us to enjoy him.”2

And the more we enjoy God in the normal times the easier it will be to bring God glory in the tough times.

Rev. Ted Goshorn in his book Prayer Changes Us. Tells a powerful story about developing rhythms for prayer. He say patterns of prayer are like this:

“It’s like when the power went out one night at our house. A storm raged such that the only light in the house was when a flash of lightning struck. But in the laundry room, where I thought the flashlight was stored, there was absolutely no light because there were no windows. I grasped around the cabinet, trying to find the flashlight, but to no avail.

Jackson, my oldest son, knew just where the flashlight was. He had been playing with it, but had (not) always put it back where I’d left it: not in the laundry room but the pantry. He went into the pitch-black pantry and came back out with the flashlight, knowing exactly where it was.

That’s what life is like in the darkness when we’re disciplined in prayer during the good times. We know just where the flashlight is because we’ve been going to it over and over again before the darkness settled in. God is our light in the dark times. If we’re good about going back to the light in prayer over and over again when times are good, if we maintain discipline, it’s very easy to find the light when the darkness settles into our lives. And finding the light means we’re safe, secure, unmoved, unshaken, unterrorized.” (34)

Church, when we bring glory to God in the good times, it makes it easier to bring Glory to God in the tough times.


Friends, Lent is a season of realigning, returning to God, and going even deeper. 

  • Today, you can bring to Glory to God in little things, in all areas of your life. 
  • You can bring Glory to God by accepting Jesus as your Lord and Savior.
  • You can partner with God in His ministry to all the world. 
  • You can bring God glory by being most satisfied in Him. 

To God be the Glory.

Closing Prayer

God help us to bring you Glory in all that we do. Whether large or small help us to realize what will truly make us happy in this life is bringing you Glory and enjoying you.


1 and 2 Warren, R. (2002). The Purpose-Driven Life: What On Earth Am I Here For? Zondervan page 58

Rev. Dr. Ted Goshorn peers intently and Dr. Brian Russell as he begins his session on the spiritual practice of centering prayer.

On Saturday, March 4th the Glennville Methodist Church hosted Dr. Brian Russell and Rev. Dr. Ted Goshorn for a Deeper in Prayer Conference. Methodist church members and pastors from over South Georgia gathered for this one day conference.

The conference focused on contemplative prayer and spiritual rhythms. 

Brian and Ted are known speakers in their fields. Brian Russell is biblical studies professor at Asbury Theological Seminary. Ted Goshorn is the Sr. Pastor at Mulberry Street United Methodist Church. The presenters provided many different ways for us to engage in prayer. There were workshops in the morning and the afternoon with a catered lunch in between. We started and ended the day with worship by the talented Mary Anne Cabbage. 

Highlights from the conference included practicing centering prayer multiple times, a Q & A time with the speakers, and a short hymn sing after the lunch break.

Here is a personal reflection from Glennville Methodist Church member Mary Catherine Banks that was featured in the church newsletter.

What an opportunity to learn a way to form a good habit that could change a life! Even though the word “habit” usually has a negative connotation, we were told about a positive one in which to enter into the presence of God through Centering Prayer every day. This new term means “setting aside a chosen period of time each day of total silence for a routine of going to God in prayer”. We were encouraged to intentionally and faithfully make this a real habit of the same time span each day in meditation and surrender to Him. By choosing a “prayer word” such as “Jesus”, we can say it to remind us to return to God when our random thoughts inevitably come into our minds to interfere with our focus on Him! 

The purpose of this centered prayer is for us to become an instrument of love in our noisy world by letting go of what disrupts us from His spirit. We are meant to love God and ourselves so that love and forgiveness of others overflows. This paraphrased quote meant a lot to me. “Daily life is like a glass of stirred up muddy water! But when we sit in silence with God, that troubled mixture becomes settled and clear. We can then see to go about our day in the spirit of love”.

Mary Catherine Banks

From the feedback received, this conference seemed to add deep spiritual value to those who attended.

Are you looking to deepen your prayer life and connect with God in a more meaningful way? Look no further than season two of the David Donnan Podcast!

In season two, I will be exploring the topic of prayer and sharing insights and practical tips for developing a strong prayer practice. I am calling this season Even Deeper in Prayer. Each episode will feature engaging conversations with experts in the field, as well as personal stories and reflections from me.

Whether you are a seasoned prayer warrior or just starting to explore the power of prayer, this podcast is for you. I hope to offer a unique perspective and relatable approach making this an accessible and inspiring resource for anyone looking to deepen their spiritual journey.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to grow in your faith and connect with others who share your passion for prayer. Tune in to the David Donnan Podcast, season two, and join the conversation today!

Check your favorite streaming sources on March 15th for our first episode with Rev. Dr. Ted Goshorn who recently published his first book Prayer Changes Us.

See season one of the podcast here.