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Poorer, Poorer. Slower, Slower. Smaller, Smaller.

March 2, 2012

“As my extended family gathered around the Thanksgiving dinner table before the market crash in 2008, conversation with cousins flowed about friends making big money with technology start-ups: “more, more; faster, faster; bigger, bigger.”

A hail of laughter greeted me when I quietly muttered that my ambition was, “poorer, poorer; slower, slower; smaller, smaller.” – Bob Sabath [quoted from an post on Sojo.net]

Click here to read: Poorer, Poorer. Slower, Slower. Smaller, Smaller. – Bob Sabath | Gods Politics Blog.

I don’t find it embarassing, nor do I feel it’s a lack of faith in God’s provision and power, to say that I’ve become more enamoured with smaller, slower things. I would not even chalk it up to age – now that I am turning 50 in April.

It’s mainly that I have lived through enough initiatives, organizations, programs, movements, and projects to have discovered that my particular gifts are best expressed in what might be described as ‘smaller’ and ‘slower’ and ‘poorer.’ And, actually, I believe this hard-earned insight can be found in much of God’s work throughout history. Certainly we know that Jesus worked in a way that was tremendously counter-cultural, and would certainly be in our day. He came to serve. He was born in a backwater town. His kingdom is not founded on any of the power systems or cranked-up business models of his day or ours.

Can I encourage you in this? Even we who are or have been leaders and servants in organizations, businesses, and churches need to be constantly reminded of the power of slow, poor, and small.

Here’s why I’m thinking of this as I write; I’m on my way to a conference in Europe. I am leading a team of media trainers for a multi-day video production training session. The students will come from all over Eurasia. We have people from Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, and other countries that are very closed to the gospel. They want to learn how to visually communicate the good news of Jesus in effective ways to many people groups who have never heard it before.

This conference will never compete with the great public events of our day. It doesn’t even make a blip on the evangelical Christian news screens or blogs. But, I believe what will happen there will prove our faith and will bear fruit for the Kingdom of God in its own peculiar kingdom way. I have been exchanging e-mails with a group of participants in the training – a couple dozen people. When I read their e-mails, where they are working, their desire to learn, and the opportunities they have, I have a strong sense that God is doing it again. He is taking the weak things, the despised things, the things that are not (1 Cor 1:28) and using them for His glory.

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