What it Means to Go Do Great Things By Jenna Stepp
As the founding director of HLI, I have mixed emotions about the tagline we picked for HLI eight years ago. When we gathered in the conference room determining some of the verbiage we wanted to use, "GO DO GREAT THINGS". It seemed to capture the heart of the kingdom adventure we wanted students to feel commissioned into. But, as with all things, once it goes public you find that everyone reads that phrase through their own filter and sometimes react to certain words or impressions. Let's take a moment and clarify what we mean at HLI when we say "Go Do Great Things!"
Go: Philippians 2:4 reminds us that we are to be a people who look out for the interests of others. We live in a culture obsessed with making ourselves, our needs, and our opinions, heard. But Jesus models and invites us to consider the needs of others. Think of your life and all those you encounter throughout your day. Who do you see during your morning routine, your day’s work, your evening activities? Wherever the Lord gives you influence is where you are to go. As Michael Gatlin, the leader of Multiply Vineyard says, “You will never meet a human in whom God is not working!” Scripture tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves. Does your neighbor know the supernatural peace of God’s presence, His comfort in their mourning, or His healing in their brokenness? We know His heart is that not ONE would perish. So we go, wherever He leads. Don’t wait for a big call. Go! Realize that if you are not willing to go for those who are near you will never go for those who are far. Going means you are developing the practice of seeing those around you, so that no matter where God calls you, your core habit is to listen to His whisper and join in what He is doing.
Do: Once we are able to see those in our lives, we start to see the pain all around us and the ways the enemy of humanity’s soul is trying to steal, kill, and destroy lives. Once we see we must do something. Love is an action, not just beliefs or Facebook posts. No one wants to get letters and texts from their significant other that say, “love love love,” but then when they walk through the door at the end of the day they are ignored. Our lives are not marked by the beliefs we hold or words we say but rather how those beliefs affect our daily actions. We don’t want God to say “Well said my good and faithful servant” right? No! We want to be people whose actions reflect the values and beliefs we hold. In HLI, we teach that any healthy and sustainable action or doing comes from our being with Jesus. It is in HIS presence and when we allow ourselves to be comforted by His love that we gain the power to take the actions He is inviting us to! I want to be clear, your value does not come from what you do, you take action to love those around you because you are empowered by the value that you have as a son or daughter and because of the great value of others. Your value in the kingdom is settled, your job assignments may change.
Our lives are not marked by the beliefs we hold or words we say but rather how those beliefs affect our daily actions.
Be mindful not to be stunted by the mythical "big moment" that may or may not come. The way you serve and love and share the goodness of the kingdom with your current sphere of influence is the most important thing. Don’t get paralyzed thinking about the influence you wish you had, the stage you wish you had, or the book you will someday write. Those are man’s version of “doing great things” but scripture points us to the little things, to the hidden moments, without praise or titles. When you are able to get up in the morning and take actions that are rooted in God’s extravagant love for you and God’s great heart for those around you, you will be taking the very actions that set in motion a ripple effect in eternity. What practical steps can you take to commit to the daily action of showing God’s love no matter where you find yourself?
Great: Often times we hear people categorize great by meaning, more sacrificial, more hard core, more 24/7, more ... Scripture tells us that to obey is better than sacrifice. This is what the Jesuits modeled. They would walk in whatever their kingdom assignment was. For some that meant great suffering and for others there was not much suffering. It’s all sacred. I honestly believe that ALL we do can be done for the greater glory of God and the advancement of His kingdom. I don’t believe in categorizing my life as though some things matter to Jesus and others don't. He has used the smallest of things to speak the greatest of truths! The Jesuit principle of magis means, pursuing “the more” in all you do. Here is the truth, everyday there is MORE!
You may think you are volunteering to lead a life group. Yes, you can show up, follow the curriculum, and provide snacks but, what more does Jesus have for you and your group? What more might He want to do? You may have a job assignment this summer to help kids at a camp. You will be setting up crafts and playing team sports, but what more does Jesus have for you and those kids? What lives has He put around you that need that supernatural peace that you carry? Don’t waste your life waiting for what seems like a kingdom assignment! EVERY DAY THAT YOU HAVE BREATH you get to go after the GREAT things that Jesus wants to do! He is in the business of redeeming and healing people, not just when you are on outreach or have an assignment connected to the walls of the church or conference!
Things: All that you do, when offered to the Lord, is a sacred assignment. The Jesuits chose a variety of vocations but it was their core that lead them. May you be full of God’s presence and power in all that you do! The same power that rose Jesus from the dead lives in you, which means, you have the ability to change the atmosphere wherever you go! There is no GREATER thing than to see what the Father is doing and join Him! Everywhere, all the time, in every person on the planet, Jesus is moving and He INVITES YOU to be a part of that.
Go Do Great Things simply means, obey Jesus.You will never regret living a kingdom life. There is no greater freedom than to let Jesus be your Lord. There is no greater adventure in life than living out God’s plan which, trust me, does not look like you’ve mapped it out in your head. It will lead you to places, opportunities, and kingdom friendships that you can’t even imagine.
My advice to you, stay close to Jesus. His presence is everything! Go do great things to make Jesus famous and bring His hope to a hurting humanity! We can't wait to hear your stories.