Friday, June 14, 2013

What does this mean and how should I live it out?

In John 3:30 John the Baptist says of Jesus, 

"He must increase, but I must decrease."

The third chapter of John's gospel is loaded with big ideas, but I want to focus on this one verse.  Here is a link to the verse in context.  I have been pondering this verse for the last few months and I'm curious to know what you think.  

Please comment as "name/url" and enter your first name only.  To maintain your privacy do not enter your first and last name.  

Remember that this blog is visible to the whole world: treat other commenters with respect and kindness and proofread carefully.  I'm eager to see the conversation unfold!

172 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. It is a great thing to think deeply about important ideas!!

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    1. I like it and I'm the first one to comment on yours

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  3. I think this verse means that Jesus will be greater and I will be lesser. I will preach about him more and more so people will come to know him.

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    1. Good job Kenny! I like how you brought spreading God's Word to others.

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    2. It's really good to spend your time preaching to others who need God which is what people need to do.

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    3. Great!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    4. Great thinking Kenneth!!!!

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    5. Very true; I totally agree because everyone can relate to this comment. Keep up the good work!

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  4. I think this means that in our lives, God needs to become more important, and we need to become less important.
    As for living it out... I think we need to shift our focus from ourselves to God.

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    1. That is so true! God should always be first in our lives

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    2. Great job Ashlyn! I like your comment! I agree with this.

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  5. This verse means that I can't be as great as God. God is greater than I am and always will be. I can live this verse out by being humble and not bragging about the things I have or things I have done

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    1. Great Job Gracie!!!! I love how humble you are and this is a great idea that I can apply to my life.

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    2. Nice job, Gracie. Totally with you here :)

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    3. Good thinking; all of our gifts are God's, not ours, so we don't have any reason to be bragging.

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    4. Great thinking Gracie! Good job interpreting this verse!

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    5. Nice work Gracie! I love this! Great ideas! You are an amazing person!

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    6. Nice job! Many people don't mean to, but place themselves higher than God when skipping devotionals, not praying or even losing sight of Him totally. I'm not saying we are terrible for messing up once, but we definitely need to humble ourselves and recognize that by doing these things we are disrespecting Him.

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  6. This verse means that, since God is more important than we are, he should be more important in our lives as well. We should decrease in "us focused" things and increase in "God focused" things.

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    1. This is true in that we should increase our God focused activities and not on just our "us things"

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    2. Aidan this is very good way to explain it. Good job!!!

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    3. This is a very clear idea. I think this could work in junior high, as most eighth graders are often more obsessed with video games, sports, makeup, etc. than God.

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  7. I believe that this verse means we should take ourselves out of the spotlight and put God in it instead. The next time I think of going to do something I like to do, I could instead pray or worship God for a while. God is more important than me and he should be given respect and time.

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    1. This is a good statement for what the verse is trying to tell us

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    2. I like this explanation, nice way of putting it

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    3. This is a great, I really like your example of how to live this Bible verse

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  8. I think that this means that we must let Jesus have authority and let Him into our lives more and we should stop making decisions on our own. I will try and ask God to help me make decisions and really listen to him more instead of just doing things on my own.

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    1. I agree :) That's a good way to explain it and put it into action

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    2. Great comment!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    3. Fantastic Kali! I love how your solution is to pray and ask God for things, as prayer is always an excellent solution.

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    4. Kali that's a great way to explain it.Good work!!!!!!!!!

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    5. Especially the piece about not making all of our decisions when we should be listening to God's plan for us.

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    6. Totally. Jesus is really important and we should always give him praise

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    7. That is a great way to apply this verse to our lives!!! Love the way you explained this verse. Praying to God is a great way for him to help us through something we need help with or don't understand!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    8. Especially the piece about not making reckless decisions and following the plan God has for us.

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    9. We all need to do this. Good job ! :)

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  9. I think that more should follow Jesus, but we have to decrease supernatural doubt.

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    1. Julian that's a great explanation. It shows us to teach the gospel to others and bring many people to The Lord.

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    2. So true! Decrease that doubt!!!

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  10. I personally think that this verse means that we should give all glory to God. That our triumphs should be his tributes. We shouldn't take the credit for his actions, but glorify and thank him for his gifts.

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    1. This is a great and so true :)

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    2. Amazing Laura! I think that I can easily apply this to my life as well as when I play sports!

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    3. Great work! I like the part when you say that we shouldn't take credit for his actions. Keep it up! : )

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    4. yea Laura this is really true, I will remember this!

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    5. Nice job Laura! That's a great way to put it into words!

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  11. I think this means that God needs to be first in our lives over everything. God is more important than anything else. We should not be prideful about anything that we do, because it is all because of God. In my life, I need to always think of others and God before myself. God is more important than we are, and I will never be as great as Him. I can't be prideful about anything, because everything I do should be for the glory of God.

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    1. Payton I love that you are so selfless!!

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    2. Payton, I like how you pointed out how we should give credit to God and how we should put others first before ourselves.

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    3. Great job! I like your comment. :) :) <3

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    4. This is good, I think I need to do more of this.

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    5. Good job! I like your thinking

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    6. Good job! i like your thinking

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  12. This verse means that we should let other people have the spotlight sometimes because it's not all about us, all the time. I can relate to this in my own life because I can give up going to something special to go to my brother's game, or even let other people go first in line.

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    1. It's hardest to let siblings go first, especially younger ones; I know how you feel.

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    2. Christian great and amazing work. What a spectacular way to explain it.

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    3. Hopefully more people will do this and focus on other people.

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    4. This is very good. keep it up.

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    5. Your interpretation of this verse is great. Its sweet of you are willing to give up an activity for your brother, and I like how you emphasize putting others before yourself.

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  13. This is a good verse. :-) I think that his verse is saying Jesus is greater than everyone.

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    1. We should have complete trust in God throughout everything we do. The way I will apply this in my life is to trust in God completely.

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    2. Short and simple way to explain it. Great work!

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    3. I second Jordan's comment. God should always be #1 in your life, and we should trust in Him fully.

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    4. Zach way to put some fun into the explanation. Jesus is greater than anyone.

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    5. I like your's a lot Zach. Short and to the point.

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  14. This means for us to pay more attention to God and less to other earthly things and people. So that we can have a better after life than life on earth. This is what I think this means.

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    1. good Spencer, I'm with you on this one. :-)

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    2. Great way to explain it. Amazing work!

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    3. Great way to explain it. Amazing work!

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    4. This is what we all need to do, let go of our earthly possessions and look to God. Good job!

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  15. It means that God is more important than us and that he needs to become more important and we need to become less important

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    1. God is Great and so is your comment

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    2. Nice job! I agree with you.

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    3. Good job! I agree with you! :)

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    4. That is a fabulous way to put it Henry!!!!

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    5. What you said is very true and needs to be expressed in more people's lives. Do you have any examples to go with it?

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    6. totally agree with you, this is great!

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  16. I think that this verse means that we should treat others better than we would treat ourselves

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    1. Good job Ian well thought through

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    2. Good work. What if you gave an example on how we should treat each other.

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    3. Nice job Ian! Good idea! :)

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    4. true i will do this more often

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  17. This means that we should be humble and kind. This Bible verse goes great with this other Bible verse: Proverb 3-5:6 -- Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your understanding. Acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will make your paths straight

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    1. I love how you incorporated another Bible verse to go along with this great idea!

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    2. Yes, those Proverbs verses go hand-in-hand with this verse. Is there, by chance, another verse that could work with John 3:30 similarly?

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    3. Good job Sarah. This is so true in an electronic-filled world where it is so easy to be prideful.

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  18. Laura I love the way you translated the verse! Christian love how you related yours to your brother!

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  19. I think this means the focus should be on Jesus and not on ourselves or others. The next time I get praised or congratulated for something, I should give all the credit to God, and keep none for myself.

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    1. I agree. I like the part when you say that we need to focus on God.

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    2. This is a great thought but how do you keep none of it when people force on you.

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    3. Great way to explain it Noah. Jesus is first and we are second.

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  20. I think that this verse is saying that God's plan for us needs to increase, while our ideas for our life need to decrease. I can humble myself and ignore my own selfish desires. I often am convinced that I have it all figured out, but I cannot, as I don't know what will happen in my life, while God knows everything that has happened and will happen. I can instead try to ignore my worldly plans for my life and listen to God's perfect plan.

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    1. This is really well thought out and covers the entire idea of the verse

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    2. Great ideas Lauren. I will definitely apply this to my life in several areas. It's so true that just when we think we have figured it out, God can change everything.

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    3. Thank you Spencer!

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  21. Personally, I think that this means that I need trust in God more than myself. This also means that when I am trusting in myself I need to lower myself,and trust in God instead of myself. I can use this in sports when I am trusting in myself and doing ok, I can trust in God and do much better.

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    1. Good job!!!! It's great that you trust in God, and believe in yourself

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  22. What are some specific things we can do to live out this verse?

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    1. Hmm...
      Maybe one way we could live it out is to take time out of our busy, busy lives (if at all possible) and spend it in prayer, reading the Bible, and trying to do all you can to connect to Him. In this way, we will shift focus from ourselves and put it on God.

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    2. We could preach the gospel to those who do not know God yet.

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    3. One area in your life that you can use this is when it come to making big decisions. You have to trust that you are not as wise as God and leave all the decision making to him.

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    4. I am going to think less about myself and my desires and put into practice the things that will glorify God.

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    5. That is great thinking Ashlyn. Yes sometimes we have busy days but we can still take a few minutes just to pray or read our Bibles.

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    6. Definitely! We always have time to play sports, do homework, just relax, etc., but somehow God is always the last thing on our to-do list. He needs to be our number one priority!

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    7. I believe that I can be more humble when winning by a lot in a lacrosse game.

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  23. You must pay more attention to the lord instead of wondering how we look, what others think about us, and what are we going to be doing today and other stuff that isn't really super important unlike the lord.

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    1. Good way to explain it =)

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  24. I believe that this simply means that the next time I think of going to do something I like to do, I could instead pray or worship God for a while. God is more important than me and he should be given respect and time.

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  25. I can be more humble and give all the glory to God. If we aren't humble we think to highly of ourselves and become self-involved and forget that we could never do certain things without God.

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  26. Some things that we can do to live this verse out is that we can let other people cut in front of us, or we can share our belongings with our friends or siblings. We should also let God have authority and full control of our lives; he is the Creator, and He has a plan for each and every one of us.

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    1. Good work, but if you add some instances to this it would make it twice as amazing.

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  27. I think we can live this out by praying more to God and giving him credit for things. For example I always pray before volleyball games, and if we win I want to give the glory to God for giving me and my team the ability to play good, instead of just giving myself the credit.

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  28. I think we could read the Bible more often so that God becomes a bigger part of our life, and that God will be ultimate factor in our lives as Christians.

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  29. I can live out this by not being so prideful. When I am playing sports, such as volleyball, instead of thinking that I'm awesome because I got a great hit, I will realize that I couldn't have done it without my team, and I wouldn't even be here without God. I will give more credit to God, instead of myself.

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    1. Great idea Payton! I think this is really good! I want to try this!

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    2. Good job! I need to do this more.

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    3. This is VERY true as a teen. If we save a goal, make a masterpiece, or get a A, we're often too prideful to realize that this is God at work. When we believe this is our victory, we refuse to learn from our mistakes by getting the idea that our mistake was simply a fluke rather than God telling us to tone our self-image down.

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  30. A specific thing we can do is try to put others before yourself, instead of taking credit for something, give it.

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    1. this is good. I like the idea of putting others first.

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    2. Like, when you do a project or have share and idea with someone, instead of taking full credit, tell the things the other person did and point out their ideas.

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    3. Good ideas. Many people need to do this, including me!

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  31. I can live this out by always thinking about God in hard and easy circumstances, and give my life to Him.

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    1. Great job Cat! You are right that it is difficult to think about God in the hard circumstances, but it seems easier to connect with God when our life is easy.

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    2. good. We all need to give our lives to him.

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    3. I can live this out in Synchronized Swimming when I am trying to hold my breath for a certain amount of time and I know I can not do it on my own so I will pray, and be able to hold my breath for the amount of time. This is one way I can live this out.

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    4. Nice job Cat! Great idea!

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    5. Great thinking Cat. I know how it is hard sometimes to think of God when life is easy because we give the glory to ourselves instead of God.

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  32. I know I can spend less time on my hair and makeup in the morning and read my Bible during that time instead.

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    1. Good job Lauren. This is great advice for all girls.

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  33. We should not worry about what people think about us because that's what can stop us from preaching to others. We should worry about what God thinks about us. He wants us to speak about him because he wants more and more people to come and know him. 1 Corinthians 9:27 I beat my body and make it my slave, so that after I have preached to others I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

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  34. I'm going to talk about the Lord to other people and read the bible more often because He needs to become greater than us

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  35. Some things that we can do are pay more attention to God in every situation. Many times we can be focused on ourselves and what we are doing as opposed to what God wants us to do: for example listening at Church, praying, and reading the Bible.

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  36. For example,the next time I think of going to watch television, I could instead pray or worship God for a while. God is more important than me and he should be given respect and time.

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    1. Great work. I should try that!

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  37. I can live out this verse in real life like when you're at a swim meet and get first place, be humble and be a a good sport about it

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  38. I can live out this verse by being more humble. For instance when I am playing volleyball I can get a little cocky about my setting. I could give all the glory to God and stop thinking so highly of myself. I would be nothing without the rest of my team.

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  39. This applies to me in when i play basketball. Instead of giving all credit to me i will give it all to God.

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  40. The things we can do that will increase God in our lives is glorifying Him by thanking Him for the achievements we accomplish with Gods help. Some examples are thanking Him for a win in a sports game, for remembering things on a test, and for the family you're in that take care of you.

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  41. Instead of taking all the credit, I could give the credit and glory to God. When I score a basket, or get a good grade on a test, it is because of God, not me.

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  42. I think that this means God needs to be more important than ourselves and we need to be less important. In our daily lives we need to shift the focus and attention from ourselves and onto Him.

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  43. This verse is saying that people should put others before themselves. Also, you shouldn't take the credit for somethings, but instead give it to someone else.

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    1. This is Dylan. I love your idea David. Good job. ��

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  44. This verse says we should be humble and give the credit to God when we make a shot or win a game because everything we do is from God. He created us and all we do. We can glorify God with our lives by crediting God for the thing we do.

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    1. I totally agree with this! Good job Jack I love the idea

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  45. I totally agree, Grace! I need Jesus everyday too.

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  46. I think it means that Jesus's works must increase, but John's should decrease.

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    1. How do you think we should apply this to our lives?

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    2. I do not know. I was going for a general Idea for what John meant when he said it in context

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  47. I think that this means that God gets all the glory because he is all powerful and it is because of him that we are living. God helps us succeed in life and thrive. God should get all the glory in our lives. If we put God first in our life then we will live a great and peaceful life knowing that the God of the universe is in control of our lives. God will protect us and keep us safe if we trust him and put our trust in him and give him all the credit.

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  48. I think stat this verse means that God should get all of the glory and praise, and we need to be humble. No matter how cool we think we are, we are not as cool God is.

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  49. People who had heard of John doing these things were inclined to believe that he was the Messiah. John humbles himself and admits that he is not the ONE, he even says "one is coming after me, ones whose sandals I am not worthy to untie." This means that we must do the same, in order to live as God wants us to, we have to show others that the reason we are so joyful and willing to help is because Jesus has planted himself in us and we are feeding that spirit until it is all that we are. John tells us this when he says "He must increase, but I must decrease. :))

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    1. Yes! You got it, Caitlyn. Now we should all live that out!

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  50. I think it means that we should recognize that God is above everything including us.

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  51. This verse mean to me that we all need to stop being proud of what we do well, telling jokes, sports, artwork, writing and more... instead we need to remember the God who created us and breathed life into us. He made our talents happen, so we should raise HIM up instead of raising OURSELVES up.

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  52. I think that this verse means that we should worship and glorify God for all he has done for us. I can apply this to my life my thanking God for all he has after sports games.

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  53. When we do things in the name of God, some people may confuse us for God and give us all the credit, when it was really God. But instead of letting them do this, we should speak up and say that we shouldn't be glorified, but God should be. I think that this is the meaning of the saying, "He must increase, but I must decrease."

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  54. This verse means that we should humble ourselves to glorify God and show how great He is. When God is happy, we should be happy. In school, we should know that God is in control of everything and we succeed nope because of ourselves, but because of God. I will make sure to remember that God is the Creator of all things and He helps me every day to be the best person I can be.

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  55. I think it means that when we get attention in life we should torn it towards God instead of using it for our personal benefit. When we turn the glory to God, people can learn about Him and they might become Christians.
    ~Cassie

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  56. When we stay humble, and give God the glory, it brings him great joy. In sports, it can be hard to stay humble if we score the winning point, but who gave you the power to do that? Giving God the glory is the least we can do.

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