Week of Monday, December 7 ­– Saturday, December 12
Not to Us – Man as an Instructor

The path of the righteous is level; you make level the way of the righteous. 8 In the path of your judgments, O Lord, we wait for you; your name and remembrance are the desire of our soul.
9 My soul yearns for you in the night; my spirit within me earnestly seeks you. For when your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world learn righteousness.
— Isaiah 26:7-9 (ESV)

What is the one thing that fuels your fire, the driving force in your life? To be a good husband, to raise children and grandchildren who love the Lord, to leave a godly legacy, to serve God and country well—these are a few of the deep desires we men tend to share. And they are all good and biblical. But what if you had to boil it down to one thing above the rest? Whatever it is, that “NorthStar” priority sets the pace for those around you in your role as the Instructor.

When the people of Israel were in exile because of God’s judgment, it would make sense to think rescue was their greatest desire. After all, they were waiting for God to come through on His word and restore them. But the hope of rescue wasn’t what got them out of bed every morning. Instead, two other motivators defined their greatest desire—God’s name and His fame. Above all else, they wanted God to move and act for His own glory.
Why God’s name? Why His fame? Think about this—when God called Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egyptian slavery, God told Moses that he should tell the people that “I AM” was sending him. “God also said to Moses, ‘Say this to the people of Israel: ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations” (Ex. 3:14-15).

Just understand this: God’s name represents the fullness of who He is and who He has been throughout the generations. Both Isaiah 26:8 and Exodus 3:15 include the Hebrew word zeker, which means “remembrance, memory, or memorial.” In other words, Israel wanted the nations to look at them and remember God. Their greatest desire wasn’t simply for their circumstances to change for the better. It was for their nation to be a living memorial to the Living God.  

What was the “NorthStar” priority for the Jewish people in these verses? To point the nations to their Lord so that the “inhabitants of the world learn righteousness.” Can you say the same? Is the glory of the Lord truly the primary desire of your soul?  Can you say: “Not to us, O LORD, not to us, but to your name give glory” (Psalm 115:1)?

  • What are some signs a man might be seeking his own legacy above God’s glory?
  • What are the things you desire above all else? How do you need to reprioritize your desires so they can serve to exalt God’s name and His fame?
  • Try memorizing Psalm 115:1 — “Not to us, O LORD, not to us, but to your name give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!” As you do, invite God to reveal the deepest desires of your heart. Ask Him to reorient your desire to bring glory to His name. As you live and lead from that place of priority, it will help set the pace for your family.