Greatness or Goodness?

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From Genesis to Revelation, nowhere does God tell His people they are to be great. God alone is great in that He is all-knowing, all-powerful, all-present, eternal.

Too often, we as humans want to be great over good. Goodness requires effort on our part. It requires intentionality, sacrifice, patience and practice. God is both Great and Good. God is great in His Lordship and He is good in His actions.

Satan calls us to strive and pursue greatness, power, prestige and fame. The Lord calls us to strive to “be holy for I am holy” (Lev 11:44-45, 19:2; 1 Pet 1:16). Holiness is the attribute of God that bridges His Greatness and His Goodness. While we are NEVER called to be great like Him, we are called to be holy in both the Old and New Testament. We are to be holy in character as we worship and serve the Lord.

This hurting world needs more of man’s goodness than greatness. The more people see Christ’s goodness in us, the more they will be pointed toward and see the greatness of our Triune God.

This life is about glorifying God and loving Him, not serving ourselves. There are enough people doing what they think is right in their own eyes, I am actively going to strive to be different and do what is good in front of our Great God and this hurting world. We have the awesome privilege to be transformed more and more each day into God’s Goodness, revealing His character and heart to this world.

May we mediate more on the attributes of God. May we be like John the Baptist stating that we must decrease and Christ increase (John 3:30). The more we meditate on God’s Greatness and Goodness the more we will be able to obey Him in the midst of the challenges set before us. I do not know what lies ahead for you; however, I do know that if you are in Christ He will never abandon You. He is with You. Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. When you earnestly ask God, “How do I respond to this?!” He will help You to respond in a manner that brings Him glory.

Father God, thank You for Your majesty and sovereignty. Thank You for Your moral attributes such as Mercy, Grace, Justice, Patience. Teach us what it means that You are Holy God and holy in Your actions. Lord God, help us to remember and reflect on all the ways You have been with us in the past, so that we may have confidence in whatever situations and circumstances that we will face in the future. Lord God, help us to lay down our desire to be great. Help us to lay down our desire to be and play god in other people’s lives. Help us to display Your goodness in this dark and hurting world. Lord God, now more than ever, stir individual hearts who are far from You to know Christ as Lord and Savior. Lord God, manifest Your fruit in our lives for Your glory. Thank You Lord for this reader. Thank You Lord that You are both Great and Good. In Jesus’s Name I pray. Amen.

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Blue Collar Theologian

My name is Mandy Sweigart-Quinn, I live in Lancaster, PA and I am a “Blue Collar Theologian.” I love Jesus! I am passionate about His Word (The Holy Bible)! I come alive when I can encourage others in their walk with Jesus (whether by writing or speaking). As a “Blue Collar Theologian” it is my aim to live/practice/work out my Christian hope with sincerity, authenticity and genuineness. As a “Blue Collar Theologian,” I strive to meet people right where they are (“Incarnational Theology”). I graduated in May 2019 from Capital Seminary and Graduate School with a Master's in Biblical Studies. I am a passionate, excited and enthusiastic person! I love flowers, sports and sunsets. Since January 2, 2018 I have had the privilege of being married to Nathan.

54 thoughts on “Greatness or Goodness?”

  1. Good morning, Mandy! The words, “we must decrease as CHRIST increases” still resonates my mind since you posted that comment months ago. May we follow you, Mandy, and “strive to be different and do what is good in front of our great GOD.” Only GOD is truly great, and may we not abuse in using that superlative. GOD bless you and your entire family! Four days to go!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Thanks for the wonderful insight.

    Love this: “Too often, we as humans want to be great over good. Goodness requires effort on our part. It requires intentionality, sacrifice, patience and practice. God is both Great and Good. God is great in His Lordship and He is good in His actions.”

    Blessings from our Messiah, King Jesus. Peace and love!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. This is a post that touches the heart of my daily struggle as a child of God. So often I have to think and pray why I want to do things, is it to promote me or to serve and promote God Almighty? Sometimes I get it wrong and have to do a u-turn, then I repent and thank Him for His guidance. After thirty-six years following my Lord and Saviour I am still a work in progress.
    Thank you for this timely devotional Mandy, these are things we need to hear often. May our Father God continue to bless you and bless through you.

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  4. Excellent post Mandy! Remember when Jesus corrected the rich young man who called Jesus “good” in Mark 10:18? Last night, as I was having a shower, 1 Corinthians 13 came to mind and I was made aware of how short we all fall when it comes to loving like God loves. What a far cry this current election process is from the holiness, goodness and love of God, that He is. No, not even remotely close, especially by those who are called by His name. If we are supposed to be different, where is the contrast? Kind of scary when you stop to think about it. The essence of your post is bang on! Blessings!

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    1. Hi, Bruce! This election season/process (and 2020 at large) is truly revealing the hearts and minds of believers and unbelievers. Personally, I am actively choosing to look past the election. Not in denial or in a burying my head in the sand kind of way. Unless God decides otherwise, I know the sun will rise and set on His command, regardless if the results are known on Nov 4th. Since the dawn of time, our Great and Good God has enabled His people to endure persecution, loving others well regardless of who was in power. Believers can either let the election be a stumbling block or it can drive us to our Great and Good God. I love that Paul ends 1 Corinthians 12:31 saying, “And I will show you a still more excellent way” (ESV). That excellent way is and always will be love (1 Cor 13). Praise God Bruce for your desire to love God and others well. May God continue to use us to show people the better way. That even in the midst of our disagreements and differences in personality we can still love others because Christ first loved us. May we be a people who are NOT afraid and ashamed to be different and stand for Christ even when it is unpopular. I am thankful for you! Love and blessings to you and Peggy!

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  5. As usual for you, so well done. We do tend to box ourselves in the train car of the cultural standards. It’s what we “see” with our eyes, so we are attracted to it. It’s where “walking by faith and not by sight” becomes real. Hugs from me and God’s grip.

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  6. Mandy, thank you for this post and prayer! Yes, society is at odds with God and His Word, always exalting the “great” and the celebrities. This fleshly thinking also permeates the church to a good degree. We can’t be reminded enough that we’re not to place people on pedestals.

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    1. Speaking of “celebrities” just watched a documentary on YouTube on Todd Bentley and the Lakeland/Florida blessing. Absolutely demonic. I hate seeing the hurt and carnage that the NAR/prosperity gospel/word of faith inflicts on people. These charlatans prey on people and it makes me sick and angry. How’s your weather, it’s cold and raining here!

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      1. RE: Todd Bentley and Co.
        Yup, all of those NAR guys and just about all of the TBN guys are charlatans. Unbelievers turn on TBN and they think that’s evangelical Christianity. And then there’s the seeker/church growth/hipster guys as we discussed previously. 46F and rainy here. They’re predicting snow for Friday.

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  7. Wow this is a very edifying post especially your observation we are never called great in all of Scripture; that point really was profound. Also I thought it was a good way to begin talking about greatness in distinction to goodness and then dive on in about God’s goodness and our own duty to do good. Thank you sister!

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  8. I agree, our purpose is to become Christ-like and not pursue greatness over humility, but to seek God and spread His word. Can you make this post shareable? I would love to guest post on my site.

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      1. You’re the best! I’m thankful for you, Nancy and your kiddos! We aren’t going to Philly or I was gonna take some pics for your homeschool lessons on Independence Hall, Liberty Bell. We may go to Valley Forge this weekend. That has American Revolution history.

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      2. I saw the governor of PA this week saying there’s so far been peaceful protest. I saw on Twitter a “front line” journalist with riots and former Marine Julio Rosas say in interviews that the PA riot was the worst he’s since since the rioting in May in Minneapolis. I think it irked me so much to think there are politicians who have to continue with a narrative even if it goes against facts

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      3. It’s awful there. It’s not protesting it’s rioting and looting. Police found vans with explosives in them. Once I heard that I decided not to go. I have friends who live in Center City and the violence is throughout the city. The National Guard has arrived and will be there all weekend. The Mayor of Philly has made some derogatory comments toward Trump. It is the worst since May. There are minority owned stores that have been looted and may not be able to reopen. Many arrests and many police wounded. It is heartbreaking to me. I know how much this must irk you because it irks Nathan.

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  9. Got caught up so busy I thought I responded to you but I didn’t! We had a leadership meeting and now I’m burned out with church thing for today lol. To answer your question about youth group: It went well! We went over the topic of how to deal with anxiety since that was requested by the kids. I thought it was a good turn out with our few youths and I’m so glad for brother Victor help facilitate things! I hope you had a good hike and time in nature with you and Nathan?

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