The way Jesus did…
There will never be a loss for leaders of integrity when leaders of integrity are mature and confident enough to pass on what God has given to them. If leaders think they are the end all to all that God wants us to be and do, then we are not doing what Jesus did. Jesus came to earth to save us from our sins. While on earth, He spent three years, walking with men and supportive women who would carry on the work He began. His final marching orders to them when he ascended back to God in heaven were;
“…go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20
Jesus also said to His disciples that some day THEY will do even more for God than HE did! “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” John 14:12-14
God invites us to His work. He doesn’t need us to do His work, but He invites us along and leads us to learn, grow, relate, love, train, mentor and lead others in His work as a gift of service to us that trains others who love God, believe in His Son and follow in His ways. This is the definition of “reliable” in Paul’s letter to Timothy. To lead is a gift from God that reliable leaders must pass on to others who are trusted by God to do His work, in Jesus Name, in His ways, for His glory! The work didn’t stop with Jesus’ disciples. God’s Kingdom work didn’t stop with Paul or Timothy.
Friends, aren’t you glad reliable, godly men and women passed on God’s gift of training servant leaders like Jesus did? We wouldn’t be reading this if they had not obeyed!!
One of my all-time favorite quotes from a current, reliable leader of Truth I admire is;
“I have more joy in seeing others do what I do, better than the way I do it, than in doing it myself.” –Andy Stanley
THIS is exactly what Paul is mentoring Timothy (and servant leaders today) to be and do—
“Pass on what you heard from me—the whole congregation saying Amen!—to reliable leaders who are competent to teach others. When the going gets rough, take it on the chin with the rest of us, the way Jesus did.”
2 Timothy 2, The Message
Doing Your Best for God
2 1-7 So, my son, throw yourself into this work for Christ. Pass on what you heard from me—the whole congregation saying Amen!—to reliable leaders who are competent to teach others. When the going gets rough, take it on the chin with the rest of us, the way Jesus did. A soldier on duty doesn’t get caught up in making deals at the marketplace. He concentrates on carrying out orders. An athlete who refuses to play by the rules will never get anywhere. It’s the diligent farmer who gets the produce. Think it over. God will make it all plain.
8-13 Fix this picture firmly in your mind: Jesus, descended from the line of David, raised from the dead. It’s what you’ve heard from me all along. It’s what I’m sitting in jail for right now—but God’s Word isn’t in jail! That’s why I stick it out here—so that everyone God calls will get in on the salvation of Christ in all its glory.
This is a sure thing:
If we die with him, we’ll live with him;
If we stick it out with him, we’ll rule with him;
If we turn our backs on him, he’ll turn his back on us;
If we give up on him, he does not give up—
for there’s no way he can be false to himself.
14-18 Repeat these basic essentials over and over to God’s people. Warn them before God against pious nitpicking, which chips away at the faith. It just wears everyone out. Concentrate on doing your best for God, work you won’t be ashamed of, laying out the truth plain and simple. Stay clear of pious talk that is only talk. Words are not mere words, you know. If they’re not backed by a godly life, they accumulate as poison in the soul. Hymenaeus and Philetus are examples, throwing believers off stride and missing the truth by a mile by saying the resurrection is over and done with.
19 Meanwhile, God’s firm foundation is as firm as ever, these sentences engraved on the stones:
God knows who belongs to him.
steer clear of evil, all you who name God as God.
20-21 In a well-furnished kitchen there are not only crystal goblets and silver platters, but waste cans and compost buckets—some containers used to serve fine meals, others to take out the garbage. Become the kind of container God can use to present any and every kind of gift to his guests for their blessing.
22-26 Run away from childish indulgence. Run after mature righteousness—faith, love, peace—joining those who are in honest and serious prayer before God. Refuse to get involved in inane discussions; they always end up in fights. God’s servant must not be argumentative, but a gentle listener and a teacher who keeps cool, working firmly but patiently with those who refuse to obey. You never know how or when God might sober them up with a change of heart and a turning to the truth, enabling them to escape the Devil’s trap, where they are caught and held captive, forced to run his errands.
SERVANT LEADERSHIP QUALITIES (Let’s learn from Paul, too!)
- Firmly fixed and fully focused on Jesus, our ultimate example of Servant Leader
- Throw themselves into what God has invited them to be and do
- All is done in Jesus Name, for His glory
- Consistently train other reliable men and women called of God
- Pass on what they know, knowing that others will do the same
- Concentrates on what God wants and diligently obeys Him, doing their best for Him
- Live what they teach, practice what they preach
- They would not ask another to do what they have not already done
- Know God and know that God knows them
- Yielded to God, to be used by God as He sees fit
- Run after mature righteousness—faith, love, peace—joining those who are in honest and serious prayer before God
- A gentle listener and a teacher who keeps cool
Like Jesus did.
You have given us work to do but first we must learn to be with you, hear from you, with your plan and process before doing anything of value and significance for you. I am listening, ready to obey. Show me your ways to pass on what you have given to me to help others grow continually in your ways, too. Provide reliable mentors for me, too. It’s a continual cycle of learning and growing, maturing and mentoring. I love how you work in us!
In Jesus Name, for Your Glory, Amen