What does it mean to ‘Glorify God’?

19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

1 Cor 6:19-20 (KJV)


I saw a placard on a gate to a garden at church that read, ‘Given to the glory of God’.  It struck me that I wasn’t sure what that meant exactly?  As I thought about it I began to examine what it means to have, give, or do something ‘To the Glory of God’?

In the example of the garden the placard is there to remind visitors that the givers arranged to have this garden there so God, not man, can see something beautiful.  We get to participate as an after thought.  That placard is encouragement to any and all that have anything to do with that garden that it is for God, and as such should be tended or treated with the absolute utmost of ability and care.

If we take away the example of the garden and replace our own body what are we saying to the outside world given the scripture above?  If I am a servant of the Lord and proclaim His name as my own by calling myself a Christian then doesn’t it stand to reason I should tend my physical ‘garden’ with the eye to God walking in it and admiring the gardener’s handiwork?  What does it say to God and the world if I let me weight go up and my physical activity go down?  We get one body for this life and are instructed to, ‘…glorify God in your body…’  How does forty pounds of over-eating glorify God?  How does the inability to walk up two flights of stairs without getting winded reflect the love of Jesus to the world around me (I am speaking of my personal body at this point)?

Regardless of where we are in the calendar year I challenge anyone who reads this to do a serious personal assessment and honestly examine just how much glory your current body presents the world on behalf of God?  You don’t have to share your honest assessment with anyone.  You don’t even have to feel ashamed of what you determine UNLESS you fail to act to improve what you find.  Continuing as you are from this moment forward is not an option unless that is all the glory you feel your personal savior deserves.