Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Way We Make a Difference Makes a Differece

When I was writing my book Difference Makers, my oldest son (age 9) asked me about the title. When I told him, he responded, "Is this like The Avengers"? This got me thinking. Difference Makers are God's heroes who are putting the world to right. After I explained this to him, his face lit up. Maybe I became a little "cooler" in his eyes.

But there is one huge difference. The Avengers have an end goal in mind, that is goodness, justice and wholeness. God's Difference Makers have a similar goal. They are sent by God to participate in God's redemption of all things. But the means by which The Avengers try to get to that end involves a lot of violence. The means and the ends do not line up. They want justice and peace, but their process of attaining it involves meeting the enemy on their terms. The meet violence with violence.

God's difference-making heroes are on a journey of learning how to align the means with the end. In other words, the way we make a difference makes a difference. The way that we follow Jesus matters. I've met people who have a passion for God's heart of ministering to the under-resourced. But their way of doing it involves judgement of Christians who don't do things their way. And they try to fix "the poor" and make them into middle-class citizens. They want the end of justice, but the way that they have adopted does not line up with that end.

God is in the business of shaping us so that the way in which we ministry displays a character that lines up with the goal of God's redemption of all things. God wants goodness, then our ways will be good. God wants justice, then our ways will be just. God wants wholeness (peace), then our ways we line up with wholeness.

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