You’re Too Big to be Small

Leadership is broken because leaders are unbroken

In Christ God has made us big, so big we can overcome the smallness of pride that lurks within us. Christ in us, our hope of glory, is how we gain God’s bigness for us.

Everything we do through Him brings us into the freedom of His bigness and delivers us from the bondage of our pettiness. And this leads me to a question…

Are you big enough to lead or are you too small to be big at all?

I mean big like Jesus was big. Big like Christ in us is big. Big enough to rise above human pettiness and to stand above the smallness of human drivenness. Jesus was big enough to turn His enterprise over to small, petty men who fought over who was the greatest and who should have the best seats in their kingdom (certainly not His) who wanted to bring lightning down on those who rejected them.

He was big enough to transform those men so they could say no to human bondage and yes to God’s will.

Now that’s big! And that’s how big God has made us in Christ.

Think of seasoned leaders you’ve seen struggling to hold on to power, threatened by younger leaders with great gifts, unwilling to give them any place at all. Or the times you’ve seen ministry teams stressed by competition and mistrust. Or the times you’ve seen a church torn apart by the clash for control.  That’s the pettiness of human pride, the smallness of human ambition.

Jesus was too big for that, and in Him we are too. Jesus was too big to worry about petty human power, too big to think about petty human vengeance, too big to focus on petty human jealousies, too big to pursue petty human ambitions, too big to strive for petty human security.


He never worried about being #1 nor was He ever bothered that He was the least of the least. He found His bigness in God’s will for Him and His purpose to provide redemption and make disciples to accomplish His world changing aims.  This is the bigness that Jesus wants to us to have.

He wants us to be big enough to disciple younger leaders who may someday take our place, big enough to turn from the expansion of our kingdom and enter into the greatness of His. Jesus calls us to be as big as His purpose for us, as big as His kingdom, as big as He was when He said yes to God in Gethsemane.

Now that’s big, and only He can make us that big. So many of us strive to make ourselves big our way in the name of Jesus, but we must understand this: leaders who try to make themselves big only make themselves small, too small to be big at all.

God has made you big, so big that you can make a difference for Him through Christ in you. God has made us big in Christ, and we cannot be small in ourselves. You’re just too big to be small.

From "You're Too Big to be Small " on Broken Leadership Blog is about changing the leadership conversation from what we are doing with our hands to what God is doing through our hearts.


Bill Lawrence is the President of Leader Formation International, Senior Professor Emeritus of Pastoral Ministries and Adjunct Professor of DMin Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary where he served full-time for twenty-four years (1981-2005). During this time he also was the Executive Director of the Center for Christian Leadership for twelve years.