Thursday, October 2, 2014

Do Not Let This Go To Your Head

Let me begin this blog with a clarification. If you're a drop in, it's not for you. If you just drop into church once in awhile, stop reading. If you just drop into work, collect your check and head on home, stop now and read something else. This is for those who are connected and committed. It's for those whose caring can sometimes drive them to compulsion.

If I said, 'don't let this go to your head,' you'd probably think I meant, 'don't get too proud about this.' Maybe you'd hear me say, 'Don't get too big for your britches.' Jesus had to say something like that on numerous occasions to His disciples. He told the 12 that the key to greatness was not greatness, but service. Apostle Peter did the same for elders in the church, warning them not to use their authority like the puffed up leaders of their day. We all need to hear that part of it. Even the meekest of us occasionally feels our oats. Parents do it. We are the authorities in our homes, but all it takes to deflate our egos is one three year old pitching a fit in public. 

There's another way things can go to our heads. I know you'll find this hard to believe, but we can often think that we are the answer to peoples' problems. We can actually think that if it has to be, it's up to me. See, people who fall into that trap are not uncaring. They care. They're not unprincipled. They have standards. They are pastors, elders, deacons, youth leaders, social workers, parents, grandparents, mothers, mothers-in-law and good friends.

Well, it begins to go to their head. They begin to think that if they don't fix everybody, if they don't meet every need, if they aren't there for every one of their child's ballgames, then . . . 

Oh, and there are a lot of people who will feed this kind of big-headedness. There are always a few groupies who will tell you you're great if you're a dictator. But, if you're the one who's meeting their needs, then you'll never be alone. Pastors, listen up. If you're good at what you do, your people can think you are da man, and you can start to believe it. Don't fall for it. You're not. There's only one who can save, heal, redeem, convict, and truly protect. The preacher may say, "You are to be the hands and feet of Jesus," and He would be right, but don't let that go to your head.

If there's a definition of big-headedness, it would be thinking that you are what only God can be.

This may not be for you right now, but I needed to remind myself of just who I am. I am a pastor, elder, husband, father, friend and son, and in each of those relational realms are situations in which I want to be the answer but do not have an answer. I want to make it better, but clearly cannot. That is what has led me here to these keys to type these words. I, and perhaps even you, need to be reminded that while we may be used to comfort, we are not the comforter. While we may be instruments of healing, we are not the healer. While we may be parents, we are not the eternal Father. While we may be the pastor who teaches, we are not the transformer of minds. While we may be the elder who rebukes and disciplines, we are not the convictor of sins. While we may share the Gospel, we are not the Savior. While anything God has called us to is important, we must never forget that we are all replaceable. And, if we think we are not, we should remind ourselves by reading the epitaph of Judas Iscariot in Acts 1:15-26.

Only God can be God without letting it go to His head.