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A Place for Greatness?

In the past week or so, I’ve been pondering and meditating on the idea of greatness. What does that mean? What does it look like? Does God intend for us to find greatness?

Jesus laid out a path for greatness in the kingdom–you have to be the servant of all (Matthew 20:26). He also said those who comes humbly as children are greatest (Matthew 18:4). Or how about Matthew 5:19 where Jesus says those who keep His commandments and teach others to do the same will be called great in the kingdom?

So I don’t believe Jesus was opposed to our seeking out greatness, but as in everything it has to be in His way and His methods.

Something that has arrested me in my time looking into this is that greatness really boils down to doing what others aren’t willing to do and paying the price others aren’t willing to pay.

Olympic athletes. Classical musicians. Innovative businesspeople. Leaders of movements. Passionate humanitarians. The ones that are great–some even changing or making history–do so because they wouldn’t give up and wouldn’t back down no matter what the challenge.

That’s not to say your pursuit of greatness will make you world-famous or that this is the point. You can live in greatness and have few people know your name, but your Father knows your name. There are great kingdom accountants, school teachers, foster parents, police, and every occupation of which you can think; but I truly believe to find greatness is to embrace sacrifice.

If our God is great, and we are being conformed to the image of Jesus (Romans 8:29), then shouldn’t we be on a path to greatness? How can we not pursue He who is greatness and not be touched by that ourselves?

Take a step

Obviously, greatness in the world’s eyes may have nothing to do with character or godly strength (can be quite the opposite), but that doesn’t mean we go to the back of the proverbial bus in community and culture because we want to maintain “humility.”

Jesus said those like children are great in the kingdom. Kids naturally dream of big things, but at the same time they are dependent on someone else to care for them and help them grow into the greatness to which they aspire.

I’ve seen over this past week some habits or patterns that may not be entirely bad, but they don’t lend to the pursuit of greatness. I want to change that; not because I want to be exalted, but I want Him exalted.

I am thankful He’s called me to greatness. I am thankful He’s called you to greatness. It’s not going to look the same in each person, but it all honors our Lord.

I have no desire to stand before His throne one day and He tell me, “I had so much more for you if you would have only let go of this…” No, whatever crown of greatness I might receive by His grace working in me, I want to be able to throw down at His feet in ultimate worship.

How about you? Have you pondered greatness much? What are you thankful for this week?

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  1. “Jesus said those like children are great in the kingdom. Kids naturally dream of big things, but at the same time they are dependent on someone else to care for them and help them grow into the greatness to which they aspire.”
    Jason, these words so reminded me of what my granddaughter, Virginia Rose, stated at the end of kindergarten about what she wanted to be in the future: a superhero!
    Wouldn’t it be awesome if we all wanted to be superheroes for God? He is the only one who can help us and grow us into a greatness we have yet to imagine. May we become superheroes for Christ!
    And if you don’t mind, might I use this quote from you in a future blog? I’ll let you know when it will come out.
    Martha Orlando recently posted..Take a Walk on the Prayer SideMy Profile

    • I responded to this the other day, but it must not have posted! Weird! So I’ll say again… thank you so much, Martha! I love what your granddaughter said and her heart. By all means, I’m thrilled if you want to use that quote for something. Blessings to you!

  2. I read this and thought of this Scripture….

    “You have given me the shield of your salvation, and your right hand supported me, and your gentleness made me great.” Psalm 18:35

    It is in the scope of right relationship with God that greatness fills our life…powerfully simple.

    Thanks Bro’!
    Jay Cookingham recently posted..HardMy Profile

    • Yes sir! That’s a wonderful scripture and it’s beautiful that it’s His gentleness that makes us great. It’s not His anger that drives us. It’s not the fear of disapproval. It’s His encouragement that lifts us up and changes us. Great thoughts, Jay! Thank you.

  3. I have been pondering this…except God has been showing me more about Jesus’ ministry. There were times when it seemed He should hurry. It was urgent He get to Lazerous, but he didn’t rush. He stayed on task even though others didn’t understand. He followed God’s plan and didn’t let urgent matters derail Him.
    I’ve also been thinking about how much knowledge He had and could have given, but so many weren’t willing to listen or simply didn’t understand. That didn’t phase Him. He didn’t go about demanding people listen to His wisdom. He trusted God and relied upon Him. His validation came from God and not man. He was great in God’s eyes and didn’t worry about what others thought of His ministry.

    I really like this post. It gave me more to ponder when I think of His greatness and His plan for my life. Like Paul, I want to be more concerned with what God thinks of me than what man expects of me and this means my definition of greatness must align with the Bible.

    • You bring up some amazing points to ponder, TC. It’s so easy for us to think, “they should all just listen to me,” but wisdom and trusting God may be saying something entirely different. We have to be sensitive. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts.

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