When being “radical” is a burden

I like this from Barnabas Piper. Ever feel like this?

The push to be radical, on mission, a world-changer can seem like a crushing weight. Sometimes life is just too hard and stuff is too broken. It’s all I can manage just to keep my world from flying to bits, let alone change anyone else’s. That’s so far outside of reality it sounds more like the twilight zone. No — reality is simply clinging to what I do know of God, His Son, and His faithfulness and just not letting go.

Read the rest here.


  • Kristi Van Dam

    I really, really like this. As I mentioned on Piper’s blog – going to great lengths can end up being a pursuit of those great lengths and works alone. This is an easy trap of Satan to discourage and burn out believers – not to mention to take their focus off of God onto works. Just to achieve a new high or status serves only oneself and not God.

  • Joe B.

    It is easy to “go hard” after the Lord and His kingdom and helping “the least of these” and look at it in a way that thinks our doing is gaining a right standing with God and/or it is easy to make our striving a work of the flesh – but the kickback against going hard doesn’t strike me as biblical. Barnabas’s words come across a little that way – “It’s all I can manage just to keep my world from flying to bits” – Isn’t the Lord keeping us? Isn’t His keeping us why we can take risks? When I look at the example of Jesus, Paul, Peter, John…I see guys that leveraged their influence as THEY lived out the life of God that had come to live inside of them and they took radical risks because they had faith in the Son of God who loved them and gave Himself for them.

    Do we really need encouragement to take it easy and take care of ourselves – to play it safe and do your best to hold it together? I deal with messed up situations all of the time where sin has things so convoluted I can’t even think of a path out for people but I know they are to walk in the light God gives. Do the next right thing. Start trusting and obeying. Holding on may be courageous and risk taking at times but surely we ought to seek to have more impact as children of light in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation. I may not make much impact – but I don’t want to fail because I didn’t think God was able to shine gloriously through this old clay jar. Put me down as one who is praying for God’s church to be more radically devoted to Christ and His cause.

  • Reg Schofield

    As my home Church embarks on a sermon series based on being “Radical ” , I will be sharing this article to many who are hurting ,doubting and feeling the weight of this broken world . I’m tired of Churches or Pastor’s following what’s hot or trending . With all respect to Pastor Platt and his book , which I have read most of , I’m a ordinary Christian who wants and is trying to be faithful . I think a follow up at my home Church should be , being an ordinary Christian in a fallen world .

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