In the book of Isaiah, we see a glimpse into God’s heart for the broken. In Isaiah 66:2 (NIV) God says, “This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word.”
But we have a problem.
By nature, we all are the opposite of the one whom He esteems. We are all unbroken. We are as solid as the hardest substance you can find—unbending, self-centered, self ambitious and never wanting to give in. We are part of a world in which we are told, either directly or indirectly, “Fight for your rights! Be your own person! What matters is success, ability, personality, position, being important and first class in everything.” This is ingrained in us.
I remember some years ago a man applied to join GFA’s home staff. He was a computer expert, a brilliant man whose ability and talent would help the ministry in a significant way.
As he was getting ready to soon join us, he called our current office manager to ask a question that was very important to him. He explained how he was leaving an incredibly important position at his current job and went on to say, “My friends are asking me what my new position is going to be. I was wondering if you could tell me so that I can put it on my new business cards to let everyone know.”
We were taken back by his request. Not that business cards and titles are a bad thing—they are not. It was the seeking of great status and an honored title that jolted us.
I have never forgotten that day. As the office manager and I spoke, we both understood the answer we must give in reply. I said, “I don’t think we can offer him anything. If he is willing to come and clean the toilets, be a nobody, he may come. But since he already is demanding a position and looking for a great title, it would be best if he stays where he is. Please tell him not to come.”
This situation reminds me of something A.W. Tozer said: “It is doubtful whether God can bless a man greatly until He has hurt him deeply.”