Christians Are Called To Be Great (Part 4)

Maybe you don’t think you’re one of the great ones. Maybe you do. Either way, this message is for you.

One of the most damaging, disastrous failings of the church in our age is that you and I, “ordinary Christians,” have not responded to God’s call to be great.

Discovering Our Sphere of Impact

How then can we know whether we’re called to be great in this sense? It’s not that difficult. First, we need to recall the other kind of greatness that we alluded to at the beginning. Greatness starts with a deep relationship with God. It starts in knowing his will as revealed in Scripture, seeking his face and his guidance daily, and knowing the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. It certainly includes knowing what true humility is all about.

Second, each of us has a sphere of influence, whether narrow or broad. That’s where we begin, by seeking to have maximum impact where we can already. We have our talents in hand from the master, and we can see what return we can bring him from them.

Third, we can explore the edges of that circle, to see how our influence can expand. We can risk going out on a limb, impacting a wider group of people, studying and learning to expand our capabilities, trying new things to multiply our influence. Christ taught us that the one who is faithful in a little will be entrusted with much. Starting where we are and walking by faith, there’s no telling how much God will lead us to do for him.

In seeking to expand our impact, it’s wise to seek depth before breadth: to do one thing well before attempting many, to influence one person deeply before trying to lead a crowd. Doing “one thing well”–or many things, for that matter–involves knowing how God has gifted us and putting our focus in those areas. Our gifts are a great clue to our calling.

Fourth, we can profit from the encouragement of a community of brothers and sisters who are committed to the same things. It’s hard to go it alone; together, though, we can burn brightly for God. Going for greatness often means hard word and risks, both of which are much easier when someone is standing at your side to encourage. It may be that the first step into the edge of your circle would be to gather a group like this. It’s not just a Bible study, not just an accountability group; it’s an action/encouragement group.

Recovering Greatness for God’s Glory

Can we revive a true understanding of greatness? In seeking God’s glory alone, can we seek it in the widest, deepest, most influential, most thrilling way? What can hold us back, if we just seek to know and to go and do what God has sent us to do? Let’s put aside weakness masquerading as humility. Let’s lay aside fear and take up faith and courage instead. Let’s choose to be as great as God has called us to be, for his glory to shine brightly and widely. 

About:

Tom Gilson is senior editor and columnist with The Stream. He’s published over 700 articles and several books including his most recent, Too Good to Be False.

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