I recently finished the book Humility: True Greatness by C.J. Mahaney. The book gets 3.5 stars out of 5 in my personal opinion. It is not because the book is “off” when it comes to theology, but rather that I had a difficult time feeling engaged with the book and I was hoping for some sharper statements to help convict my heart of the sin of pride in my life. It is still a good read for everyone since we all have problems with pride as it exposes areas of sin in our lives and gives practical tips as discussed in my prior blog entry.
Towards the end of the book there were some excellent points made to parents that I believe those in high school and college should also take to heart about their own future pursuits as well. These charge us to consider what we esteem to be true greatness. What do we think about when the work “great” comes to mind? Is it the biblical definition of being a servant of Christ and serving others or is it something as defined by the world?
Consider these statements by C.J. Mahaney:
Are any of your ambitions for your child more important to you than their cultivation of humility and servanthood – the basis for true greatness as biblically defined? Are any of these ambitions more important to you than their learning to serve others for the glory of God? In other words, are you more interested in temporal recognition for your child than you are in his eternal reward? (pp 157-158)
I could point to countless ways in which our culture adulates and glorifies the undeserving – especially in the broad category of entertainment that includes professional actors, athletes, and musical artists. Are your children slowly and subtly being conformed to this world as it relates to their admiration and emulation of these celebrities?
Here’s a recommendation: If you’re a parent, don’t celebrate anything more than you celebrate godly character in your children. I commend and encourage my son for academic achievement or an athletic award, but we break out into real celebration around my house only when there’s a demonstration of humility, servanthood, or godly character. (p 160)