What If Your Greatest Chance to Change the World is Also Your Greatest Source of Pain?

Who doesn’t want to change the world? There’s something inside of all of us, I think, that desires to leave things different than when we found them. That manifests itself in all different kinds of ways:

– We build libraries.

– We donate money to charity.

– We raise our children.

– We tell people about Jesus.

Here’s the rub: When you think about changing the world, usually you think of something big. Massive. And joyful. Something that gets your name in the papers or on the best-seller list. But here’s an uncomfortable question:

What if your greatest chance to change the world is also your greatest source of pain?

I wrote about this dynamic in Wednesdays Were Pretty Normal:

See, it’s one thing for someone to say, “I just got bumped up to a six-figure income, bought a house in the burbs, and have a beautiful wife and 2.5 healthy children. Glory to God!” God should receive glory for all good things in our lives.

But it’s an entirely different matter when people are weeping over the state of their circumstances, their health, and their world – yet they say along with Job in the Old Testament, “I know that my Redeemer lives” (Job 19:25 NASB). That’s powerful. That is evidence of someone who doesn’t just stick with Jesus during the good times. That is the life that screams out to the world around it “Jesus is enough. And He’s better than all of these circumstantial and fleeting blessings.” And that kind of person propels and magnifies the glory of God… even through their pain. They prove to a doubting world that Jesus is good enough to hang onto. Jesus understands better than we do that many times the most effective way for the glory of God to be advanced is through the suffering of His people.

Should you desire, you can get the book here. The quote is from chapter 4.

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