Saturday, January 27, 2007

Lessons from Obscurity

For all the honor of the field worker in God's eyes, to the eyes of the world you are relatively obscure. Even within the church, few can name more than a handful of you by name -- and if you limit that to those currently on the field, the number dwindles more. Where God is awakening a church to His kingdom purposes the interest in general prompts prayers for "the workers" and even for the specific regions ... but to much of the church, you are nameless and faceless. Loved, respected, even idealized ... but obscure.

You may struggle with that from time to time. Like the one who returned home from 25 years on the field who happened to be on the same boat with a dignitary who was welcomed home on red carpet while he and his wife had no one to meet them, you may wonder about your relative importance. (You probably know the story: his wife reminded him that he didn't have a homecoming welcome because "you're not home yet".)

I too have struggled with relative obscurity. In my pre-Christian days I had huge ambitions ... selfish ambitions. My dreams and ambitions changed after I became a Christian, and He has purified me consistently to remove the "selfish" part (an ongoing process) ... but the desire to do something "big" for the kingdom has remained. Yet I often feel quite obscure as I can pretty easily count the number of people within my small sphere of influence.

Yet somehow, God in His wisdom has used this for my good and His glory. One day, sitting at my mother-in-law's house and praying over this very subject, I found myself writing down my words to God. He didn't need me to write them down, of course ... but He knew I would need them. I found them again today and I share them as a fellow traveler who is learning the blessings of obscurity. For as I decrease, He increases. True significance is not what I do, but how I let Him live through me. May this cry of my heart encourage your heart today.

Lessons from Obscurity

I asked You to give me something to do for Your glory, something grand and magnificent.
You gave me a wounded child and said "Believe".

I asked You for more, for a grander task.
You gave me a husband with dreams and said "Hope".

I wanted to reach even higher and sought a broader place to serve.
You gave me a sick mother-in-law and said "Love".

The bigger the vision you have given me for the world
The more you remind me that faith, hope, and love begin at home.

I have the faith to do big things for You.
Do I have the faith to be obscure?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think, for what little that's
worth, that some of God's greatest
rewards will be bestowed on the
'nobodies' of this world. God looks on the heart and sees the
intent. Remember David's desire to
build the temple and God's response? I think God is very well pleased with His servant Rosa!!