“One of the outstanding ironies of history is the utter disregard of ranks and titles in the final judgments men pass on each other. The final estimate of men shows that history cares not an iota for the rank or title a man has borne, or the office he has held, but only the quality of his deeds and the character of his mind and heart.” -Samuel Logan Brengle
I am not wishing to pick a fight – not my intention.
I am not shaking my fist at “the establishment” either.
But…I do think Brengle was right – when it’s all said and done your rank, your position in life, your amazing accomplishments mean absolutely nothing. It won’t matter if you were a General, a Major, a Colonel, a Captain, an Adherent (I am purposely putting this in a nonsensical order)…it will not matter at all. You could have been a Divisional Commander, or just an A/V sound booth guy on Sunday Mornings – it all won’t matter.
Why Rank Doesn’t Matter:
Because like this life…
like your current cellular phone…
like the computer you use at home or at work…
like the food in your refrigerator…
IT. IS. ALL. TEMPORARY.
What we do with these temporal things and titles, however, is what truly matters.
If we lord over others because someone has given us authority – then we are certainly unwise with these temporal things.
If we squander our time and our talents, we too are unwise with that temporal thing or gift.
If we are good stewards of what and where God has placed us, however, and we live for Him in and through all things – we are wisely using these temporal things.
What we do matters.
How we live matters.
Where God places us matter.
Our Attitudes, Pride, Humility, Love, Hate, Generosity or Greed – It all matters.
Just because you wear a uniform doesn’t necessarily mean you are God’s soldier. It boils down to your heart, and where you stand with your Savior.
Despite the facade, even the uniform (duh) will not save us.
Dare I say some become Officers or Soldiers because of the assumed power it provides them. It is simply a tool to misuse and abuse. I am confident that this is not the majority of us, but be mindful of the snakes and vipers sometimes posing as Soldiers (even in our Army). We still live in an imperfect world though now as Kingdom people we can bring hope to those seeking.
We all must be sober of thought and honest with God.
In other words “check yourself, before you wreck yourself”.
Rank and Power in our world will fade – they will mean nothing when we stand before the King of Kings and Lord of Lords…though, what we do with what we’ve been given WILL matter.
Should there be ranks and order in our Army? Of course…I’m not talking at all about anarchy…but what I am talking about is something deeply personal for all of us. Are our heart and motives clean? Are we living for God or are we living for ourselves? Is there work still needing to be done in our lives? Changes needing to be made in our attitudes and our hearts? This is an ongoing mission…with an ongoing need for personal holiness.
I am only scratching at an itch that begs to have the whole salve of the Holy Spirit upon it. Without Him we can do nothing.
When it’s all said and done, the heart of our mission and our purpose will be evaluated by the Most High. This isn’t said to scare us, but rather to provide us a reality check.
So…how are you doing?
Something more for our Army world to ponder today.
To God be the glory.
Steve, An additional thought that often crosses my mind. First and foremost we are soldiers. Regardless of rank or position,we are all called to mission as servants of King Jesus in this Salvation War!!
Father, may every officer that holds a rank remember they are a minister which mean servant. May every coprs office remember they are a soldier and every local office remember that they are not the corps officer in charge.
Lord, may everyone who steps foot into ANY Salvation Army building; from a thrift shop, to a shelter, to a corps …may those people know we are ALL soldiers under YOUR command.
In Jesus name and for Chist sake, amen
Always a good blog post and proof (fruit produced) that Jesus Christ is the Vine and we are just the branches.
Tnx Again !
I agree totally with the message here, however I would also say that we would be better served without rank of any kind…..it would eliminate the concept that your rank determines your where you should serve not to mention as previously stated the ego and power trips of too many….
Rank is important,in this life but whatever God has planned for our us, for eternity, is His decision to make. In my opinion, rank creates order and respect as long as the person is deserving of respect.