Fox news had a special on Warren Sunday night called “Can Rick Warren Change the World?” Think about the title…of course, right off the bat, it is scued. Rick Warren can not change the world no matter how hard he tries and no matter how many continents his ministry may someday cover. The media loves these catchy, sweeping statements which propel a man such as Warren to god-like status but the truth is that whatever Warren or any other individual may attempt is extremely important if endowed with the right motives but “a drop in a bucket” compared to the work already accomplished by Jesus Christ; the fruits of which truly have changed the world in a full scale, undying movement. Furthermore, any difference we make is His work which he chooses to do through us. An amazing yet extremely humbling concept.
Much of the special centered on Warren’s “fearless, daring” personality. Those who know him well repeated the sentiment that he is a man who is not afraid to take chances and make mistakes along the way; thus he and his wife Kay are mapping out a plan to eradicate aids in Rwanda. Will it work? No one can say for sure but, says Warren, “I want it to be said on my grave these four words: at least he tried.” I find it interesting that our concept of success today in the Christian world is no longer defined by living a life of consistancy to the word of God, practising discernment, leaving a Godly heritage, etc. It seems these have been deemed irrelevant and even unattractive measurements of success compared to how much we accomplish, book sales, the number of people stuffed into an ornate mega church, world-wide recognition (or worship) and how many different religious leaders can be allied with despite vital differences. Men such as Warren always end up falling into this latter camp.
To approach my first question…is Warren for real, standing in his untucked, button down Hawaiin shirt surrounded by the opulence of his Saddleback church? In one sense, I think he is and there is little doubt in my mind that he means well in many ways and truly wants to make a difference. Still, in the end I think he is more interested in what can be accomplished during this life, in his way rather than considering work of eternal significance.
*Let me know your thoughts on Warren, this special, or both!