Then I grew up.
For most of my life, I wanted to be a famous baseball player. Then a famous baseball coach. And most recently, a famous Christian pastor, author, and speaker.
I don’t think I’m the only one with this desire.
In a world flush with celebrity, it is hard not to envy those with all the attention. This is true even in the world of Christianity. There are celebrity pastors, celebrity Christian authors, celebrity Christian speakers and musicians. They live in the public limelight. Every tweet, word, and move is leeched on by the lessers of us.
I’m not sure if these celebrities thought to themselves one day: “I want to be a Christian celebrity.” With how vicious people can be (see Mark Driscoll example), and with how much scrutiny their lives fall under (see Steven Furtick example), I’m not sure any of them want to be celebrities anymore.
I used to want to be one. I feel gross even admitting that. But it’s true.
What is about me that desired fame? What is about me that desired to be seen, to be heard, to be noticed on a grander scale?
Looking back, I can now say that this was singularly sin. A desire to be famous is not a healthy, God-honoring desire.
Thankfully, God has changed my heart. My goal to be famous has morphed to a different, more God-honoring goal.
I will teach people about Jesus if there is 10 or 1,000 people listening. I will be faithful to the relationships put in front of me whether it’s 2 or 20. I will be faithful to the circumstances God has placed in my life whether they are perfect or imperfect.
Does this mean that it’s not God-honoring to try to expand the message you are preaching, to write a book, to sell more records, or to reach more people?
ABSOLUTELY NOT! It is definitely God-honoring to desire to do so.
But the motive is what matters most. Are we doing it to be famous? To be more known? Or is our motive to be more faithful – more faithful to the skills, strengths, and gifts God has given us?
We need to continually check our motives, because if you’re like me, you’ve probably realized how true this is: “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?” Jeremiah 17:9
Check your motives. Lose the famous goal. Strive for faithfulness.
“Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4