Over-watch, otherwise known as “Sniper Team”.
2019 – is a year of … what? I have seen years come and go (70 in all) and hope each one would carry it’s own significance for us.
Could I introduce “Over-watch” into our lives to watch-over our movements.
Everywhere we go we are bombarded with the message that our significance is proportional to the degree we change the world.
Harvard University library database reveals something surprising. The number of book titles with various forms of the phrase “change the world” published in the last 15 years is five times more than the number published in the entire twentieth century. In other words, Milennials, more than any previous generation, have been shaped by a culture that equates effectiveness with significance.
Missionalism, a worthy modern definition: “the belief that the worth of one’s life is determined by the achievement of a grand objective…. Before long it controls everything in the leader’s life: time, relationships, health, spiritual depth, ethics, and convictions.”
Ultimately we will do and sacrifice anything for the mission—which isn’t about displaying God’s worth, but our own.
We have replaced the love of the living God with sacrifice to the Idol of Effectiveness. When we bow to this idol, it steals our joy and replaces it with an unbearable burden. An idol is a good thing that we make into an ultimate thing. We begin to see everything—our value, our identity, even the absence or presence of sin in our lives— through the lens of effectiveness. But the most tragic lie the Idol of Effectiveness tells us is that a life spent in service for God is the same as a life with God.
Mt 7 “Lord, Lord, did we not prophecy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many might works in your name?” But Jesus will say to them, “Away from me. I never knew you.” These are people who are absolutely convinced that they belong to Christ because they have spent their lives on mission for him, and they have been very effective. They have preached in his name, they have fought evil in his name, and they have performed miracles in his name. And yet, they never knew him. That is the great danger of confusing effectiveness for God with intimacy with God. And do you know what the most frightening word in this most frightening passage is? “Many.” Jesus says many will come to him on that day completely convinced that they belong to him because of their effectiveness.
You may be thinking, How is that possible? How can they do those amazing things and not know Christ? How can they be so effective in ministry and be rejected at the judgment? Here’s how. The Idol of Effectiveness causes us to look at the wrong fruit. We become enamored by relevance, power, impact, and how much we have changed the world. While all of those things are measures of effectiveness, none of them are a measure of faithfulness.
Because God does not judge our effectiveness. He judges our faithfulness.
He did not send his Son to recruit you to change the world. He sent his Son to reconcile you to himself. Your value to God is not in your effectiveness, but in your presence, with Him.