That beautiful and profound verse, And they glorified God in me (Gal 1:24) says so much. It was not Paul whom they glorified, nor racial or facial approval. In fact, Pharisee Saul had been a sworn enemy and persecutor of the early followers of Christ, and this made it all the more remarkable when God turned him around, entered into him and transformed him through the Holy Spirit.
To the non-believer, there would have been no glorifying. To the Jewish religionist of the day, Pharisee Saul/Paul would have been an embarrassment, an abomination. To the local Roman or Greek citizen, he would simply have been an obnoxious irrelevance from an ethnic minority. Yet to every born-again believer there is that measure of glorifying God; in Paul, in themselves, in all who have been (and are being) transformed by Christ.
Early on in one’s walk with God there may be stumblings and meanderings. Sadly, this can happen later on, too. When Ephraim and Judah of Hosea saw their respective ‘sickness’ and ‘wound’, ie. when the believer is troubled by some inward consciousness of sin or outward trial of providence, then went Ephraim to the Assyrian, and sent to king Jareb: yet he could not heal you, nor cure you of your wound (Hos 5:13).
Whether it be money or health, job or family, persecution or backsliding, let us remember the Almighty’s atonement for us; an ‘us’ chosen and limited from His sovereign view, yet countless as the stars from our earthly view. Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols? I have heard him, and observed him: I am like a green fir tree. From me is thy fruit found (Hos 14:8). Let us pray that others may glorify God in us.