16And this was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. 17But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.” 18This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God. 19So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise. John 5:16-19
In University I got sick- mono! I remember feeling really terrible about it because of how I was letting people down. My campus minister, Ron Little, tried to give me some perspective but it wasn’t working. So he said, “Craig, go home, put your thumb in a bucket of water and if it leaves a hole in the water, come back and tell me.” Humbling. Yet even then, it took me a while to comprehend what Ron was telling me!
Sometimes we can have an over-blown sense of just how much everybody else needs us. We believe we are indispensable. Its a problem for leaders because it cuts two ways: this attitude will ruin us and it will ruin the people we serve. Its the death of humility. Its the death of delegation and genuine empowerment.
Jesus is extraordinarily necessary for our salvation. And yet, he maintained humility, and the capacity to empower others. He knew who He was because He knew His Heavenly Father. And of His Heavenly Father, Jesus says, “He is always working!” and “I’m only doing what I see my Heavenly Father doing.”
For mission and for life its essential for us to remember: before you and I showed up on the scene God was working. If we begin to believe that its all up to us and that we are God’s answer for humanity’s brokenness, our mission can become our idol. We will become a distraction with our sense of heroics, pointing people to us rather than to Jesus. We will become disappointed, angry, and bitter. Jesus is familiar with the our problem, but it was not His problem. Jesus only saw His work through the lens of His Heavenly Father.
The remedy for our overblown sense of requirement is to look again to Jesus and tell Him, “I’m available today to be a part of what you are doing.”