For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are. – 1 Corinthians 1:25-28.

David McCullough wrote an article some time ago discussing presidential power saying that it is the unseen characteristics of former presidents which gave them their greatness. In Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s “The Little Prince” there is a scene when the fox says that what’s essential is invisible. Here are some of the invisible characteristics McCullough mentions: integrity, depth of soul, and courage. David points out that our presidents have come in all shapes and sizes. Some have had great educational experiences and some have not. In other words, what really made these individuals great would not be found in words or a photo on a resume.

It appears to be the same with the great people of the Bible. People like Gideon and David. They were the least of their families. But God knew their hearts, their inner essence, which towered above others around them. They had usable hearts. Some like David and Timothy were too young in the eyes of the world but God used them anyway. Some had hearts like that of Isaiah which said, “here I am Lord send me.” Some had hearts like Gideon and Moses. They thought they were unusable but once God touched their lives they were unstoppable.

Many churches are searching for pastors, but they are looking with the eyes of the world. If Jesus were to submit a resume to your church you would most likely reject it. Why? Because He had no formal education and His only work background prior to ministry was as a lowly carpenter. He also came from a little obscure place called Nazareth. Even after He began His ministry, He did not go to seminary, and He just wandered around from place to place with His little cult of followers. Most churches today would not be all that interested in having the apostle Paul as their pastor either. Of course, Paul did have the benefit of having the finest education available at the time. However, Paul was domineering, opinionated, intolerant, and he had an unsavory past having persecuted Christians. He also had a prison record. Who would want a person like that to be their pastor?

The point being that before we consider others unusable or unqualified we need to consider what God thinks. In addition, before you consider yourself, unusable or unqualified, you need to know what God thinks.

(How does God define greatness?)

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