I love thinking about words.I think the word 'invalid' is a horrible word. Used to describe someone who is too sick to get around by themselves, it seems to attack the very core of their identity. If you are not healthy you are an in-valid. You are not valid.
But its a good insight into our value system. Most of us are validated by what we do, and invalidated by what we have failed to do, don't you think?
A friend of mine who leads a large and innovative church said publicly a couple of weeks ago, that for him, the need for validation from ministry grew over time. That he got more insecure, not less insecure as things progressed.That he still wrestles with identity coming from who he is in Christ rather than what he's doing for Christ.
I had coffee with him yesterday and we talked about it more. I appreciated his honesty. But honestly, his comments were disturbing. Whether we sing songs, sell houses, own companies or lead churches, most of us have a milestone in mind, that will one day validate us when we reach it. The problem is we then become milestone addicts. The next milestone becomes a millstone around our necks.
I walked away from that coffee with fresh resolve. I will not be validated or invalidated by the size or profile of the church I lead. Or how many people read my blog. Or the car I drive. The list is endless but the lesson is the same.
If I do not get secure now that I am God's son before I am his servant then nothing I achieve for God will ever make me secure.
The Father's pleasure, the Son's sacrifice and the Spirit's witness must be our validation.