Summary: John C. Maxwell said “Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.” And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven." – (Matthew 18:3)
Change is inevitable
John C. Maxwell said “Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.”
And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven." – (Matthew 18:3)
Thinking of their own innovation, the disciples asked, who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven? This question followed closely a prediction that Jesus would die. The Lord said that He was going to be delivered into the hands of men and they will kill Him, but He will rise again on the third day (Matthew 16:21). Convinced that Jesus was the Messiah but not understanding how He could literally rise again, the minds of the disciples were focused exclusively on the idea that somehow He was about to set up the Messianic kingdom. Though Jesus had recently declared it impossible to follow Him except in self-renunciation (Mathew 16:24), here they were looking forward to becoming chiefs of state in His kingdom and they wished to know who should have the highest office.
A Worldly ambition of disciples But the Lord Jesus said, 'You are going in the wrong direction. You are thinking in terms of earthly glory, in terms of power, fame, wealth, honor, position. I am going in the opposite direction. I am going to an earthly death and humiliation.'
Greatness in the view of men differs much from greatness in the sight of God. The disciples could not see that Jesus came, not to glorify Himself, but to humble Himself. Because that was the only way salvation could be accomplished. This self-humbling is called the 'narrow road' in the Sermon on the Mount. The disciples' question gave Jesus an opportunity to teach them something completely unexpected. He reverses their perspective of greatness by this paradox: If you want to be the greatest, you have to be the least. Whoever then humbles himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. The point is that spiritual greatness requires humility, which is defined here by a radical change of orientation in a person's life.
Regardless of the individual or institution change is an inevitable factor in the life-cycle of any enterprise. Change can be one of the most stressful things in life, even when the change is desired. Human nature naturally resists it. Of course, we know that change is inevitable. We face change as we mature, as our bodies’ age, and as we interact with the world. We also know that change, in the Christian life, is desirable. In fact, it is God’s plan for us. He makes all things new (Revelation 21:5), and the old is dispensed with. We want to become more like Christ;
When we begin to follow the will of God, we must be prepared to be stripped of those influences that may deter us from righteousness, we must be ready to move when God asks us, and we must be willing to do it no questions asked. Nothing worth having is ever free or easily obtained, but the reward is well worth the work. Change does not necessarily mean a change of scenery. A change of heart, belief, or thought is sometimes required when following God's will. God is preparing us for a transcendent move of spirit. You are growing in Him. This inevitably brings about change on many levels.