“But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant” (Matthew 23:11).

Youth makes fools of us all. I was once defiant to all things sensible. My youth was a time for doing the impossible without the fear of consequences. Greatness was my aspiration and I saluted pride without an ounce of humility! I was encouraged by my educators to be great; and they assured me that I could be great! What is greatness? I suppose I thought it was being famous with great honors. I tried with all my might to be great, but I failed to be what I thought was greatness. Now I am little older and a little wiser, I discovered in Christ, that the one important component I lacked, was the humility to become truly great. Greatness is not fame and honors. Greatness is being humble in the absence of fame and honors. Humility is in the Shadow of Greatness.

The Son of Perdition is the chief example of greatness without humility. He provided a lesson and the great consequences of pride in his campaign for greatness. It cost Lucifer his place in God’s kingdom and he is condemned to hell for eternity. “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High.”  (Isaiah 14:12-14). Yes, the fallen spirit is famous and greatly evil; but not for a greatness that will bring love and peace to humanity.  His greatness is synonymous to sin, lying and deception and destroying all that is good, and his name is now Satan. Pride turned his greatness into something horrible and notoriously evil.  Thereby, being great does not mean that all greatness is good!

There is a great sadness in my heart for my brothers and sisters in leadership, who are desperately trying to become a great megachurch preacher.  The “Woes” of Christ are clinging to them like sin to hell! Many church leaders are playing the numbers’ game. How many people can they convince that they are solely for Christ; and they can join the church and stay as they are! The members can continue to live in sin, and as sinners there will be no consequences! Yes, they preach a little from the Holy Bible to be called a church of Jesus Christ! But if they preach the unadulterated truth, the seats would be empty. Empty seats are a sign of humility. Oftentimes, not all the time, the leader is not preaching a watered-down Gospel. The greatness is evident in the sight of God, even though the size of the membership is displaying something different.  The five people sitting in those seats are stronger in the Gospel, than the megachurch with 10,000 members! Why? Because the leader is humble enough to serve five members without the fame and praise of 10,000!  The leader is in the Shadow of Greatness. The leader is doing his job to the glory of God and not for worldly greatness!

It is so important for Christian leaders to understand that without humility there can be no true greatness! It is the act of humility that magnifies greatness! Jesus is the greatest example of humility and greatness. “He hung his head and died!” Jesus did not use his powers to make himself great, but humility made him great! ‘And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted. (Matthew 23:12). Jesus was not calling people to himself! He was calling people to the kingdom of God. Everything Jesus did was about the will of his Father! “Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and showeth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them. And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.  Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold angels came and ministered unto him.” (Matthew 4:8-11). Jesus is great because of his humility! He did not accept the devil’s riches of greatness! Jesus stayed in the in the SHADOW OF GREATNESS! He did not parade himself around like a bouncing monkey and make people laugh! He refused the fame and the spotlight of the devil. Jesus allowed God to glorify him and not the devil’s exploitations! Leaders must decrease and let the work of the Holy Spirit increase in the ministry of Jesus Christ!

For the record, this is written to encourage Christian leaders to stop pimping the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and start preaching and exercising the true WORD OF GOD without seeking greatness! God bless you and amen!

Written by Reverend Jessica L. Matthews, Missionary Pastor

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