I am in Philadelphia for a board meeting. I have had the opportunity to visit with a number of friends the last few days. Such visits are always encouraging and remind me of things that I need to hear much more often. An impression that has formed in me, with growing depth over recent years, is this: We are so busy doing big things about very little and unimportant stuff.

I try to ask myself each day, “How important is this?” Does it fit with what God has really called me to be doing? Why or why not? My “to-do” list too often drives me rather than my calling and vision list. I am praying, past mid-life as the world uses the expression, “Lord, teach me to know the difference between the important and the really important.” I do not aspire to importance or greatness, as the world defines them, but I do deeply aspire to make a real difference for the kingdom. The kingdom defines the word "difference" for me so my values are not like those of many who aspire to great things. But I do seek to hear God’s Word each day and to follow his counsel more carefully.

I am also reminded that Jesus said "greatness" in his kingdom is defined by being the greatest servant of all. Whatever I do must reflect the deeply held value that service is the call of God, not human praise, which may or may not be given.