Romans 1:21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.
This year on Extreme Home Makeover they are having celebrities come and help with the build. It’s probably either to attract ratings or freak out the recipients, or both. At any rate, they are somewhat a guest of honor for the week. There have been a couple of times this season, that there was a celebrity on that I didn’t know. The homeowners were excited, but I had no idea who they were. I thought it would be funny if when the homeowners were surprised with a celebrity, their response was: “who’s that?” I can see it now… The bus arrives at the home and Tye shouts out,” good morning Johnson family!” They come out screaming and jumping up and down. Tye announces, “this week we have a special guest helping us with the project – Taylor Swift!” The family looks at each other puzzled and says, “who’s that?” Now that would make good TV! It’s oddly a given that people should know public figures’ names. We are supposed to want to meet them, be like them, idolize them. We are supposed to freak out when we meet them. But what about God? What about recognizing Him if He were to walk into a room?
Here in this section of Romans, Paul is writing about the wrath of God that is going to be poured out on those who are wicked. Verse 21 tells us how they arrived at their condition of depravity. That is, even though they knew God, they neither glorified him or gave thanks to him. The failure to do those two things led them to a place of depravity, where their hearts were darkened and they fell away from God. These two things are simple things really. But it seems as though both Christians and non-Christians alike can easily live life without doing them.
How is it that we can receive the grace of God and have new life and yet not give Him glory with our life? It seems that if we are going to have relationship with God two things that we can do without much effort are giving Him the glory and giving Him thanks. These two things are really a natural response to what He has done for us. They are a life response to the new life He has given us. The question is: do we respond? Would the world around us know that God is at work in our lives? Do they see us glorifying God and do they see us giving Him thanks? It all starts in the heart. It starts with an internal response to God, wanting to turn to Him with thanks. When we don’t, Paul says, we give way to futile thinking and spiritual heart disease. Today, I will be thinking about how my life is marked. Hopefully it is marked as one who gives glory and thanks to God in all things.