I am convinced that for most people, including myself, God probably does not have big plans. Huh? This is not what every one is usually told at youth camps growing up, right? You see, in America, we equate ‘significant’ with ‘big’. If I am significant, if God’s call for my life is important, then that must mean it is big. Huge. Gigantic. World altering.
There is a problem though with this thinking. Only a few people in the Bible had “big” callings. When I use the word ‘big’, I mean the kind of destiny that actually involved touching thousands of people in a regional or national or international sort of way. Like Moses. Like Joseph. Like David. But as recently brought to my attention by Randy Shirley in Winnsboro, Texas, many of the recorded acts in the Bible that were important enough to include do not even list the name of the person that performed the deed. For example,
- What was the name of the person or persons who rolled away the stone at Lazarus’ grave?
- What was the name of the boy who brought the basket to Jesus and His disciples’ with which 5,000 (plus women and children) men were fed?
- What was the name of the little lady who dropped two worthless coins in the treasury at the temple that Jesus made such a big deal of?
As Randy pointed out, the list is much longer than this. The major, major, MAJOR systemic problem with equating significance with bigness is that for every person (which happens to be the extremely large majority) whose God-given assignment is not that big, then that person is left with no option but to conclude that God does not have anything too important for him or her. This turns out to be quite the impetus for an identity that is laced with frustration, a lack of value, and even despair. It also serves as a rather formidable catalyst for feelings of insecurity and inferiority which in turn lead to sin. Sin? Read the last of the 10 commandments.
So, if your specific God-path on the earth happens to be big, great. But do not set up bigness as a measuring stick as to whether or not your purpose is important. It is a demonic filter meant to discourage about 99% of people in Christ who are called to change their small world, not the entire world. Big does not mean significant. Besides, big can easily become superficial.
This filter of significance rather than bigness is what EVERY disciple of Jesus MUST exuberantly embrace with the utmost excitement if we are going to truly speak value to every person that gives their heart and life to Christ. I cannot imagine the peace, joy, and spiritual authority that someone will walk in once they become more interested (and at peace) with doing something significant with God rather than something that has to be big. Is God enough for you? Is a smaller role okay with you or do you dream of big stuff not because God is big and has spoken something big into your heart, but rather, because you need big so you can feel important?
I have a feeling this would also result in pastors and churches in America becoming more more spiritual and service-oriented (like our wonderful serving Savior) rather than entrepreneurial in nature. This would be a great thing. After all, I think God can do a pretty good job of marketing His own Son through ordinary, humble lives.