A few weeks ago I told you that I had been given the absolute blessing of sharing my testimony during the Easter weekend with two other members of Church of the Highlands here in Birmingham. I was humbled that God opened the door for me to share my story, considering that there are hundreds, if not thousands, of members at Highlands with their own unique stories that would have been more than happy to openly share what was on their hearts with others.
Well, the “numbers” are in from the twenty-nine services that were held at the six Highlands’ campuses that weekend, and they are, in my humble opinion, rather astounding.
An almost unbelievable 21,481 people attended the Easter services at Highlands! Even more incredible was that fact that of those thousands in attendance, 3,421 of them made a decision to begin a relationship with Christ (my calculator tells me that this computes to 15.9%).
I have to tell you, I was blown away by those numbers, grateful that I had been invited to be even a small part of the services, and even more grateful to be a member of a church that is drawing so many people to Jesus.
But then I wondered…
What if the second number had been 1? Just one. And what if the percentage had been a paltry .000046?
Would I have been as humbled or grateful? Would I have been as blessed? Would I, in fact, even be telling you about our one, singular success in this post?
To be honest with you, I probably wouldn’t be writing about it. I would, however, have been just as humble, grateful, and blessed; for that one person.
What if I had been that one person who didn’t know God, or didn’t have Jesus in my life, or had never been filled by the Holy Spirit? Would I have wanted someone to make an effort just for me? What if it had been you? Would you have wanted to be “found”?
Earlier this week I finished reading a book written by Pastor and noted author Bill Hybels titled HOLY Discontent, (Fueling the Fire That Ignites Personal Vision). In his book, Hybels talks about one particular aspect of the world in which you live that, well, that you can no longer tolerate! And then you do something about it.
He cited the cartoon character Popeye the Sailor Man, when he was fed up with a particular situation, proclaiming “That’s all I can stands, and I can’t stands no more!”
“Popeye moments.” When you reach the point that you just can’t stand something in the world that you’ve seen, or heard, or read about. Perhaps it’s something that you’ve experienced. It’s that defining moment in life when you’ve just had enough. I’m not talking about bad drivers, or people that cheat on their taxes, or people that break in line. I’m talking about things that in society that have a negative impact on others. In our cities and states. In our country. In our world.
Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, a young teacher in Calcutta, had her Popeye moment after seeing countless numbers of men, women, and children who were destitute, homeless, hungry, and disease stricken. She committed her life to doing something about it. At the time of her death Agnes was simply referred to as Mother Teresa.
A young pastor named Martin Luther King Jr. had seen people of his race, blacks, being pushed to the back of the bus, being forced to eat in a separate area, and being deprived of equal opportunities in education and in the career field. And being lynched. He’d had enough, had his Popeye moment, and dedicated his life to making things different. That dedication ultimately cost him his life.
There’s the evangelist Billy Graham, and Dr. Bob Pierce, founder of World Vision, one the largest Christian relief organizations in the world. Both had Popeye moments.
Something tells me that each of these amazing individuals would have been just as dedicated in improving the life of one person as they would have the lives of one thousand, or one million.
I believe that, upon its discovery within, that a Holy Discontent ignites a fire, a passion, in an individual that cannot be ignored. This has certainly been the case with me.
My Holy Discontent centers on those with no hope in their lives for a better tomorrow. I simply cannot stand it when I encounter someone whose life is void of hope, or of the promise that life can be anything more than a one way ticket to despair. Meeting a hopeless person reminds me of, well, of the way that I used to be. Before I knew God.
I know that with God all things are possible, that He will provide me with all that I need, that He will comfort me, shelter me, and pick me up when I’m down. With God in my life, hope is a constant companion. The man that I am with Him is so much more complete than the man I was without Him.
And so I write The Seed of Hope. And I use our business as a platform to spread His word. And I give glory and praise to His name. And I never pass up an opportunity to share the promise of a new and better day with Him in it, using what He has done in my life as an example.
I want everyone to know the sheer and absolute joy of living life with God in it. That’s my Holy Discontent. It’s my passion, my driving life force, my way of trying to make the world a better place.
I invite you to find the source of your Holy Discontent. Oh, believe me; it’s there, just waiting to be found. Look, you don’t have to change the world. Start small. Look inside your heart for that one thing that you just can’t stand any more, the one thing that will make a difference; even if it’s just for one person. You’ll find it. In fact, you may already have an idea of what it is.
The next step is for you to do something about it. If you do. Make that, when you do, you’ll find that the most incredible thing happens. The more that you feed your Holy Discontent, the more it will feed you. And you’ll find that your life is richer, fuller, and more complete than you ever imagined possible.
You see, our real blessings in life come from being a blessing to others. Even if those “others” are, in fact, just one.
Have a blessed week!