Beyond the Local Church: Sanctified Ambition

06 Dec

Sanctified Ambition wide

“Unfortunately, many very capable leaders are quashed because of other people’s fear of the visionary.” - Beyond the Local Church, pg. 102

Ambition is an extraordinary attribute when it’s sanctified. William Carey’s famous dictum, “Expect great things, attempt great things” is such an example. And yet the “father of modern missions” faced withering criticism that would have demolished a lessor visionary. At a denominational meeting where Carey was pleading the cause of apostolic, cross-cultural ministry, an older leader brutally undercut him saying, “Young man, sit down! You are an enthusiast. When God pleases to convert the heathen, he’ll do it without consulting you or me.”

Michelangelo had it right: “The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.”

What we need on the contemporary scene is not less ambition, but more. Much more.

We need more outspoken entrepreneurs like Francis Xavier, the pioneering missionary to South Asia, when he admonished those at home to “…give up their small ambitions and come eastward to preach the gospel of Christ.”

Next week: Are you apostolic?


Read more in Beyond the Local Church, CRM President Sam Metcalf's new book.
Purchase a copy here.