The only way we rise above is to go below, to help where it hurts, to reach the people you don’t want to, knees and palms in the dirt, in the dark, to touch the Silent Kingdoms.
We’ve all heard them–the long lectures about creating a “sustainable future,” to make something of our lives, to be openly successful. The American Dream.
As a senior in highschool, I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve been asked what I’m going to do with my life, how I’m going to get there, make money, become rich and famous, and then, through a logical progression of events, become happy.
Granted, I’ve been tempted to invent a glamorous dream in which I come out on top–where my advisers don’t rightly call my life aspirations a spitball of nitty-gritty vocational suicide that is dangerous, unsupported, unrecognized, uncool, and in some cases, unrealistic in a realistic world.
In other words, I won’t be voted as Most Likely to Become a Millionaire this year.
But maybe I don’t want to be voted as anything at all. Maybe God has purposed something more for us than a plaque and a gold sticker and a status symbol before our first name.
Maybe he has more for us than fame and fortune and power. Maybe we have been endowed with enough purpose to silently work. To reach Silent Kingdoms. To do the things that nobody sees and reach the people that nobody knows. Without recognition. Without a “thank you.”
What does your ministry look like? In planning mine, God asked me one question to filter my future through–A haunting question that stripped me of everything until I was raw between God and my own ambition.
“Are you okay with making my name known, even if yours isn’t?”
For you were designed to draw closer to me. And your expression is to make my name known, to make my love known, and to be an example–a sometimes silent example.
1 Timothy 4:12
Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.
Setting examples isn’t always easy or glamorous. It means you rise above what you see, to strive to supersede the cultural norm. When our vernacular culture is to rise above the necks of our peers and to crush them, the only way we rise above our culture is to go below, to help where it hurts, to reach the people you don’t want to, to touch the silent kingdoms.