Have you ever felt you were destined for greatness? How did that go? Have you won “America’s Got Talent,” and gone on to fame?
I’ve noticed something. If you want people to read what you write put something about “destiny” in the title. That’s why I put it in my title four times… and here you are. Works doesn’t it?
Excuse my frankness, but we like to think they we’re more than just the product of our parents’ passion, that we’re on earth for a reason. Otherwise, what’s the point?
I agree a thousand percent with that, but I have a bit of a problem with starry-eyed people floating through life trying to find that marvelous destiny that is certainly their lot. There’s no way God could have destined them to be ordinary. We’re all speeding towards greatness. Right?
Hmmm … if everyone is great, no one is great. If everyone is destined to be great, then great becomes ordinary.
Here’s one definition of “destiny.” “The events that will necessarily happen to a person or thing in the future; the hidden power believed to control what will happen in the future; fate.”
Kind of like the philosopher, Doris Day sang, “Que sera, sera. Whatever will be will be.”
Isaiah talks about people in his time who worshipped the gods of Fortune and Destiny. He doesn’t hold out much hope for those who sell out to them.
“But as for you who forsake the Lord and forget my holy mountain,
who spread a table for Fortune and fill bowls of mixed wine for Destiny,
I will destine you for the sword, and all of you will fall in the slaughter…”
Isa. 65 :11, 12, NIV
I get a funny feeling when Christians talk about “fulfilling my destiny,” when the emphasis is on “MY”… We’re not happy with the present, but we’re sure that greatness looms just ahead.
Destiny Or Mission?
The problem was self-centered destiny is that the Lord calls, but selfish destiny doesn’t want to listen. “”…for I called but you did not answer, I spoke but you did not listen.” (Is. 65:12, NIV)
« Car j’ai appelé, et vous n’avez point répondu, J’ai parlé, et vous n’avez point écouté… » (Es. 65 :12)
Selfish destiny chooses what intrigues it or promotes it. Religious trappings can’t change its essential nature. It’s, “me, me, me, me,” not about the Lord Jesus.
“Greatness,” isn’t me comparing myself to others, feeling that I’m a cut above everyone else.
No, great people compare themselves to what they can be in the Lord. It’s not one set against another but it’s me set against what I could be in the Lord.
Instead of talking about my destiny, I’d rather talk about my purpose in life or my mission in life. My calling. The job God created me to do. I’m a servant. The Lord Jesus is the boss.
What if someone prophesied to you, “Thus saith the Lord, you will be a street-sweeper !” That’s not the destiny we dream of, is it? Someone has to sweep the street, though, or we’re going to be up to our knees in trash.
And I think God is going to call us to account for how we do what He has put us her to do.
Destined To Sweep Streets?
This is about the third time I’ve quoted this in Coffee Stains, but I love what Martin Luther King said, “And when you discover what you will be in your life, set out to do it as if God Almighty called you at this particular moment in history to do it. Don’t just set out to do a good job. Set out to do such a good job that the living, the dead or the unborn couldn’t do it any better.
“If it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures, sweep streets like Beethoven composed music, sweep streets like Leontyne Price sings before the Metropolitan Opera. Sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry. Sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will have to pause and say: ‘Here lived a great street sweeper who swept his job well.’”
If you’re on America’s Got Talent, look at that camera and croon, “Look at me world. Here I am. It’s my destiny. Woo-oooooh! I’m doing it my way.”
But, if you’re serving the Lord, look around at your friends who are serving Him, too, and think, “Wow! We are all doing something great for the Lord, because we’re serving Him with our whole heart.”
Look up and say, “Lord, how about it? How’s that street look? Are You pleased, Father. Did I really do it well?” The question is the same if you’re the president of something.
Then one day you can stand before Him, saved by what Jesus did in you and hear Him say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’” (Matt. 25:23, NLT)
“’For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. I will be found by you,” says the Lord.” (Jeremiah 29:13, 14)
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