November 11, 2013
Recently I met a great man.
A fellow pastor set up the meeting. I was to have lunch with a very successful businessman who had a passion for teaching God’s people about generosity. I thought to myself, “Here’s the answer to my prayers for our financial struggles. This man could show generosity by writing one check, and we could finish the year in the black.”
On the morning of the meeting, I woke up gripped in anxiety. What if I really mess up? What if I say or do something that really bothers him, and he regrets meeting with me? My success or failure seems to be riding on this one meeting. This is like a mini assessment center, and my worth is at stake.
Then it hit me – who is God? Deuteronomy 10 gives a helpful description:
“Behold, to the LORD your God belong heaven and the heaven of heavens, the earth with all that is in it (v. 14). For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God, who is not partial and takes no bribe” (v. 17).
Every morning I addressed One in prayer who is so much greater than the man I would meet for lunch – a man, who was unknown to me until just a few days before.
What was my problem?
The command to Israel was just as necessary for me: “Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no longer stubborn” (v. 16). The very core of my being was covered such that I was insensitive to the greatness of God. I was stubbornly seeking the “greatness” of the world, ignoring the greatness of the God who rules above the power of the world. That God is not impressed by those things that so easily impress me. His love and care are based on the influence of one man – the God-man Jesus, by whose merit I stand before God fully complete.
So what do I do? Do I skip the meeting, and tell this businessman I have no need of him?
No. I simply need to put this man in his proper place. God has blessed him, and maybe God will use him to bless me. Then again, maybe I won’t impress this man, and he will never consider me again. Either way, my calling is the same as that of God’s people on the threshold of the Promised Land: “You shall fear the LORD your God. You shall serve him and hold fast to him, and by his name you shall swear. He is your praise. He is your God …” (vv. 20-21). He has done great things for me. Holy is his name.