We must be careful in applying the term "legend" to the life of any man or woman.
This label has been applied to those living and deceased from each of the seven mountains. Please insert your list of legends here.
But remember, a man can be labeled "legendary" for a life not so well lived. The lives of notorious gunfighters, mobsters and assorted bad guys appear in books, blogs and biopics. I suppose there are large audiences for stories that gush about a life of sin. It surely seems a waste of brain cells to learn about the notorious. Any content that produces the takeaway "Don't live that way" should be replaced by the study of lives well lived.
So it was with a bit of trepidation that I did a podcast about a new show on the Charisma Podcast Network. It's titled Lessons from Legends with Dr. Berin Gilfillan. The first question I asked him was about his view of the "legend" label.
"There's a lot of different meanings of the word 'legend,'" he said. "It can be like the Loch Ness Monster or a legend of something that happened a long time ago that you can't verify. But if you go to the Cambridge definition of the word—'legend' is someone very famous and admired, usually because of their ability in a particular area. And to me, a legend is somebody who's done something extraordinary, who's been mightily used.
"I worked with Reinhard Bonnke," Gilfillan said. "I traveled with him; lived next door to him; and ate breakfast, lunch and dinner with him for 3 1/2 years. I got to understand the legendary life that he lived and what he did that was extraordinary. He led 79 million people to Christ, and I just felt like we needed to not lose that legacy. We're in an age where they're pulling down statues, and they're trying to destroy history. And I said, 'Let's learn from history; let's look at the lives of these great people who've accomplished great things. And let's try and learn some lessons from them.'"
Gilfillan also discussed his latest book, titled Pursuing Maturity. My takeaway from the book is that a life lived in pursuit of maturity is in itself legendary.
He said, "I believe that there are two agendas that heaven has for the earth right now that everything boils to the two agendas:
"No. 1, I believe God wants a mass training of laborers for a harvest," Gilfillan said. "And No. 2, He wants the mass preparation of a bride for His coming. Pursuing maturity is the endgame of every believer. It needs to be what we are. It's one thing to stop this race as a believer, but God's objective is for us to become mature in what we are, and to become somebody who's meaningful and accomplishes something. The planting of the seed of salvation is evangelism. But Paul says, 'I planted, Apollos watered, God gave the increase.'"
"The watering of the seed from salvation to a hundredfold increase is revelation teaching; it's the pursuit of maturity," he said. "When the plant reaches a hundredfold, that's a 10,000% increase of your seed. The goal to pursue maturity is something that I think every Christian has to understand. What are the ingredients and the mentorship that are involved? If we don't have a good process, we will never accomplish maturity. So the book is about a challenge to every Christian to reach the place of maturity in their lives and have a hundredfold increase in what they are supposed to do with their future," he said.
I believe the Lord breathes legendary life into all of us. He has a divine plan for you and me. I will only be a legend if I hear the words, "Well done, good and faithful servant."
Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president of the multimedia group at Charisma Media and executive producer of the Charisma Podcast Network. His Charisma House book, Love Leads, shows that without love, you cannot be an effective leader. Download his Greenelines podcast at cpnshows.com
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