One of the most difficult things to grasp in this walk with God is learning that God should be the center of our lives, and that we should, in fact, put ourselves at the very bottom. After all, practically from birth, we are taught that we are the most important people in our own lives. Of course no one ever says these exact words, but we're taught to "look out for ourselves" and to "chase our dreams" and to "pursue our heart's desires." Not that there is anything inherently wrong in doing any of these things, but it does make the concept of surrendering to the will of God a difficult one, simply because the first thing we learn is to live according to our own will.
How many times have I prayed, "Not my will but Yours be done?" How many times have you prayed those words?
Until we give our lives to Jesus, laying them down at his feet, we live by our own will. Actually, a lot of the time, even after giving our lives to God, we still do. Jesus definitely knew this. That's why He put the words "Your kingdom come, Your will be done on Earth as it is in heaven." in the words he used when he taught us how to pray. Jesus knew the struggle. But the end of that prayer tells us why those words uttered at the beginning were important: "For Yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever."
Why do God's will? Why live according to God's will? For His glory.
We pray that God's will aligns with ours, instead of the other way around, hoping that while we do whatever we want, God will get the glory because of us, rather than God being glorified in spite of us. But the psalmist had it right, "Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness." And Paul wrote, in that same eighth chapter of Romans, that all things work together for good for those who love the Lord and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).
Let us instead pursue the things over which Christ presides, seeking to make God's will the desires of our heart. Then, as God is glorified, we too will be, instead of the other way around. Let us pray the prayer of John the Baptist, "He must increase, I must decrease."
Let us shout from the mountains and whisper in the valleys: For Your glory Lord! For Your glory alone!
Be blessed and shine for His glory!