16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. (Matthew 6:16)
Preacher Lee Eclov shares this funny story from an article for The Wall Street Journal. Writer Leonard Mlodinow relates this from the life of baseball great Joe DiMaggio:
It was the summer of 1945, and World War II had ended. Former soldiers, including famous baseball stars, streamed back into America and American life. Yankee slugger Joe DiMaggio was trying to be "Yankee fan Joe DiMaggio," sneaking into a mezzanine seat with his four-year-old son, Joe, Jr., before rejoining his team. A fan noticed him, then another. Soon throughout the stadium people were chanting, "Joe, Joe, Joe DiMaggio!" DiMaggio, moved, gazed down to see if his son had noticed the tribute. He had. "See, Daddy," said the little DiMaggio, "everybody knows me!"
Eclov goes on to reflect:
The junior Joe DiMaggio made the innocent child's mistake of assuming all the glory at the Yankee Stadium that summer afternoon in 1945 belonged to him and not to his father.
Jesus wants us to make the same distinction with God as our father. That’s why he says what he says above. People will see our good deeds and glorify, not us, but God.
It reminds me of whenever small children want to “help” you carry something. It’s clear to you that they’re not making the load any lighter. Your muscles are the ones doing all the work. But of course that never occurs to them.
Scripture is clear about this. God is the one doing all of the heavy lifting. Anything we do to help him will hopefully result in more glory for him as well. This Sunday, we’re going to be talking about glorifying God.