During my hour of prayer and reflection I read John 1. The section that I focused in on the most was vs.43-51, Jesus' interaction with Philip and Nathanael. Nathanael, first unconvinced of Jesus' divinity despite Philip's words, eventually confesses Jesus as the Son of God. This was primarily because of Jesus' vision of Nathanael under the fig tree - exactly where Nathanael had been.
Jesus follows up this interaction with this in v.s 50 "You believe because I saw you under a fig tree. You will see greater things than that." In vs. 51 Jesus gives Nathanael a few of the greater things that he will see. Nathanael, perhaps, was pretty amazed at the words of his newly confessed Son of God friend.
Now, verse 50 started me wondering and thinking. What would it mean to see even greater things after one confesses Christ as Lord? There is no reason to see v.51 as an exhaustive, but short list. Nathanael would have gone on to see Jesus heal, turn water to wine, etc - those would fall in the category of "greater things." Is it possible that we (meaning the church) is seeing greater things or can still claim that promise in v. 50? Are we just ignoring the great things or just mistaking them for something else? How do we translate v. 50 for us today?
As a pastor I have many goals - growing the church being one of them. I would like my church to grow in quantity (evangelism) and quality (spiritual disciplines/fruits of the Spirit). Is it possible that I can expect "greater things?" Will the Spirit, through our church's prayer and devotion, begin to do a greater thing in our community.
My answer is yes, but not for the reasons I just mentioned. Our devotion (or late thereof) acts as a work - we can't earn God's love nor earn more of God's Spirit in our lives. My answer is yes, not based on our devotion, but on God's Promise. God promises to send His Spirit to us. Through this promise the Spirit will help the church grow by convicting hearts as to the truth of God and their own rejection of God. God's faithfulness to us (like He was to Israel) guarantees that we will see greater things, but in quality and in quantity. It may not always come in the form that we want or expect, but the promise is fulfilled day by day.
We can, like Nathanael, expect greater things from God.