Thursday, February 01, 2007

Pursuing Greatness

Recently I came across this anonymous quote: “We must remember that it is not in any easy or self-indulgent life that Christ will lead us to greatness. The easy life leads not upward, but downward. Heaven always is above us, and we must ever be looking up toward it. There are some people who always avoid things that are costly, that require self-denial, or self-restraint and sacrifice, but toil and hardship show us the only way to nobleness. Greatness comes not by having a mossy path made for you through the meadow, but by being sent to hew out a roadway by your own hands.”

I want to live a great life, and I hope you do, too. But greatness looks very different in the flesh than it does in the Spirit. From the perspective of the flesh, greatness is making much of the self whatever the cost to others. From the perspective of the Spirit, greatness is making much of the glory of God whatever the cost to self.

As Jesus said in Matthew 20:25-28, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."

Indeed, I want to live this kind of life, and I hope you do, too.

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