Friday, January 5, 2018

Day 6 of 40 Days of Prayer: He Must Become Greater!

The focus of this day hits home.  During my seminary training, my classmates and I were warned about the 3 Deadly “G’s” of ministry – “Gold, Girls/Guys, and Glory!”  Of these deadly distractions, perhaps the sneakiest is “glory.” 

It is natural and appropriate for one to desire to see the ministry one leads grow and succeed.  However, with the desire to see growth, often comes a desire to see one’s credit for the growth increase as well.  It’s as if a quiet, inner voice whispers just out of reach, “this victory isn’t as sweet, if you don’t get the credit.” 

Such thinking is contrary to mission accomplishment.  A leader I greatly respect once shared a simple but powerful leadership axiom: “It’s amazing how easily you can lead your group to success, IF you don’t care who gets the credit for the success.  The mission’s success is more important than your recognition!” 

John the Baptist had a firm grasp of this concept. When his disciples questioned Jesus’ increasing fame and prominence over him, John retorted simply, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”  In our prayer lives, let us pray that we serve in such a way that God gets the glory. Let us also embrace His answers to our prayers, so that when others are called to prominence to accomplish God’s will, we celebrate the victories, even if our role in mission success is secondary or out of sight. HE must increase… 

1 comment:

John Draper said...

Outstanding thoughts, pastor. There's an everpresent temptation among churches to place our own agendas over His. After all, we're taught to value and pursue success and popularity in our culture, and this subtle idolatry can seep into our spirits in many ways to challenge the Lordship and pre-eminence of Jesus. Churches may constantly wrestle with the pressure of choosing how to be more "attractional" at the expense of the "missional". But He must increase, even if our own comforts and likes decrease.

So I pray "Lord, in all we might aspire to do and pursue as your church, increase our vision and commitment around who You are and what you desire to do. May we never downplay YOUR agenda or pre-eminence so we can have our way."