Summary: If you believe in Jesus, then also believe in His promise that someday, the world will be destroyed and we will all be in Heaven with glorified bodies and the greatest of whom were those that during this life have sacrificed, served and been selfless.
Some people see Christians as someone who are not strong, muscular and powerful; we tend to think that they’re not supposed to fight back even when they’re being pushed around. Some of us don’t see Christians as great in some aspects simply because some think they are just Christians, and for some, Christians are weak.
However, God called us Christians to Greatness, but it might be different to the greatness defined by the world.
And to differentiate the meaning of Greatness by God and by the definition of the world, here are the 4 Ps we tend to use to measure greatness here in our world:
1. Power- A person’s greatness is measured by the things that they have the ability to control.
2. Prestige- A person’s greatness is measured by the accolades / reputation that they receive.
3. Position- A person’s greatness is measured by where they are in life.
4. Possessions- A person’s greatness is measured by the things that they own.
Now here’s how Jesus measure and define the Greatness of His people:
1. Sacrifice- We are called to “Give up who we are so we can become who God wants us to be”.
Jesus sacrificed all the 4 Ps (Power, Prestige, Possessions & Position) given in heaven for life on earth so that we can be with Him. He gave up the praise of the angels to hear the insults of sinful men. Jesus gave up the position in heaven to take up a position on the cross. And lastly, He wasn’t only betrayed by Judas, Peter betrayed him too and even the rest of his disciples during his darkest hour.
God tells you: GIVE UP YOUR WILL. You can’t give your life for Christ unless you surrender the entire will to Him first.
Our calling is to sacrifice everything we value so that we can take every great plan God has for us. But it is only when we sacrifice our selfishness that we will truly find the depth of Christ within us.
In Mark 9:31, Jesus was fully surrendering His life to show the biggest sacrifice He could offer the ungrateful world where He is in.
He said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of his enemies. He will be killed, but three days later he will rise from the dead.”
2. Service– Remember: We live to serve Jesus and He wants us to serve others. It’s not about being great and being the most important in the world, because in the first place, a person who is truly great puts the kingdom first.
Greatness in Jesus' eyes is serving the needs of others. And Jesus' eyes are the only ones that count in the end. He said, "Whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant". Come on the search for true greatness. If you are not already serving the needs of others in some way that fits your gifts, pray that God would show you a path to greatness this fall at Bethlehem.
As Christians, our thinking should be “How can I help?” instead of “What’s in it for me?”
• We want to have our own way with things
• We want what is best for us
• We want our personal rights
• We want the rewards of life
There is nothing wrong with getting recognition, holding position, rewarded as long as we have right motivation or right reasons in pursuing these.
3. Selflessness- You have to humble yourself. There is no “I” in the word team. Jesus reminded the disciples that “It’s not about being first or last but the advancement of the kingdom” As long as the team (or the mission) wins! If you look at the bigger plan of God, you will fully experience being selfless.
In two similar stories from Mark 9:37 and Matthew 18:3-4, God uses a child as a reference to humbleness where He said that whoever welcomes the child on His behalf, welcomes Him as well and not only Him but also His Father who sent him. And also anyone who becomes as humble as the child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.
God’s definition of greatness is way different than what we learned from the world.
There are a lot out there who are more powerful, more prestigious, more famous and richer. But with God, greatness is immeasurable; you cannot count what He can offer, because it is beyond what this world has.
And from here on, you are reminded that God does not want you to pursue the temporary things.
Mark 8:36 asks us, “And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?”
If you believe in Jesus, then also believe in His promise that someday, the world will be destroyed and we will all be in Heaven with glorified bodies and the greatest of whom were those that during this life have sacrificed, served and been selfless.