Church Leadership
Are You Missing What God Is Doing While Holding Out For Something Bigger?
When we get to heaven will God ask some of us "Why did you look down on the ministry I gave you?"

God doesn’t always show up in our lives and ministries the way we want him to.

Because, even though we want to do great things for God, our definition of great isn’t always the same as God’s definition of great.

We all have great opportunities for ministry. Don't turn them down or belittle them when they don't match your expectations.

To illustrate how this often plays out in our lives, especially as pastors of smaller churches, let me piggyback off an old parable many of you have heard, and maybe even told.

Waiting For God To Show Up

Once upon a time, a man heard that there was a flood coming that would destroy everything around him. He had no way of getting out in time, so he asked God to rescue him and God told him he would.

Shortly after praying, a high-profile 4X4 drove up to the house through the rising floodwaters, stopping at his front door to offer the man a ride.

Our definition of great isn’t always the same as God’s definition of great.

“No thanks,” said the man. “God will rescue me.”

As the flood continued to rise, the man found himself stuck on the second floor of the house. A boat floated by, and the people on the boat threw out a lifeline to offer him a ride.

“No thanks,” said the man. “God will rescue me.”

Later, as the water was about to overwhelm the house, the man was trapped on the roof. A helicopter flew in and dropped a rope ladder.

“No thanks!” yelled the man over the whir of the chopper blades. “God will rescue me!”

The flood rose and the man drowned.

When he arrived in heaven, he asked God “why didn’t you rescue me like you promised?”

To which God responded, “I sent a truck, a boat and a helicopter. Why weren’t they good enough for you?”

God’s Idea Of Success Is Different Than Ours

I think a lot of pastors are like that man. Including me, at times.

We’re regularly offered great opportunities for ministry. But sometimes we turn them down or belittle them because they’re not what we expected.

The church isn’t big enough, the ministry doesn’t match our idea of greatness, we don’t feel called, and the like.

I wonder if, when we get to heaven and ask the Lord why our ministry wasn’t bigger, he’ll respond with, “I gave you a hurting church to pastor, neighbors in spiritual and moral crises, and a family that needed you to be a loving spouse and parent. Why wasn’t that ministry big enough for you?”

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April 24, 2017 at 3:31 AM

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