Changing The World?

Is Rick Warren really the real deal? Do his Hawaiin duds and bare feet accurately portrey a simple, humble and relaxed man or has he learned how effective a facade can be to the success of his mega-ministry?

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!

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6 Responses to Changing The World?

  1. daniel says:

    Your statement about religious leaders uniting despite doctrinal differences seems to imply that that is a bad thing. If you were referring to, say Islam and Christianity, that’s one thing, but I think denominations “uniting” or at least considering themselves part of the same body is without a doubt a very good thing. I could talk forever about why I think denominations do more harm than good, but I was just confused by that comment in your post.

  2. Susanna Rose says:

    I guess I should make myself more clear…I was referring to say Islam. Thanks!

  3. maryanne helms says:

    I think it is really easy-whether a mega-famous person or just a regular woman like myself, to think too much on our accomplishments- such basic human pride. I think that is why that Scripture exists about not letting your left hand see what your right hand is doing. Just too easy to steal the glory, or try. My favorite quote ever that I remember constantly when faced with pride, is Keith Green: “And when I’m doing well, help me to never seek a crown; for my REWARD is giving GLORY to you”.

  4. Rick says:

    oooh, Maryanne scores a point on the side of the board for an old debate between Rick and Susanna: should we seek rewards. “We’re all gathered here to remember ______. He wasn’t very nice, not too bright, never did anything that amounted to anything, in fact his life was a real train wreck… but hey, at least he tried. Lets serve the punch!”Rick Warren is a favorite target of some, I don’t actually find that he deserves the harsh criticism, I just find his work shallow, not too profound. So I guess in that case it is perfect that his goal is just to say “well I tried”

  5. bchallies says:

    I will have to ask you more about the special, Susanna….Didn’t know you had watched it!

  6. daniel says:

    As far as seeking rewards goes…we should by all means. Read Desiring God by John Piper.

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