Titus Email October 2018



Volume 12, Number 10– OCTOBER, 2018


2018 is racing by.  How are you doing spiritually?  Is your relationship stronger today than it was at the beginning of the year?  If it is not, literally slow down your schedule and spend quality time with Jesus each day in the Word and prayer, plus spending time with solid Christians friends who can encourage and develop you.  Also there will be training occurring in several countries during October and early November.  WILD training will occur in a new country in November so WILD requests your prayers.  Plus the bi-annual WILD Summit is planned for next July in Uganda!  Thanks.  Mike



          Peter was adamant that Jesus was not going to turned over to the Jerusalem elders, chief priests and teachers of the law to be killed and be raised to life (Matthew 16:21-23).  “Never Lord, will this happen to you!”, so said Peter.  Jesus quickly referenced Peter to Satan, that he was now a stumbling block to Jesus as he did not have the things of God in mind, but rather thinking from a temporal, earthly view.

          Think about that.  Peter wanted Jesus to be liked by the Jewish people and that Jesus would lead the charge to overthrow the Roman government. Jesus’ approval ratings would quickly diminish if He talked about the Jewish authorities being the ones who would kill Him.  Peter demonstrated another idol of leadership and that is approval which is when the leaders lead to be liked rather than to faithfully fulfill the assignments they have responsibility for or given.

          This idol deals with wanting to be liked, not wanting to make decisions that will “rock the boat” or make people upset with you because of making the right decision.  Now all of us desire to have people like us and we are commanded to love one another by Jesus.  We are not talking about making decisions so that we make enemies or to show people that we are in control (previous Titus email lessons) or exert our power (future Titus emails).  If you are intentionally making a decision to hurt someone and make sure that person “learns their lesson”, that is sinful and not at all what Jesus intended when He put in place servant leadership.

          Instead of leading like a servant and for the good of the people involved in, the leader uses his or her position to simply be liked.  You will not make decisions that could hurt your approval rating or your like-ability.  When you do not make decisions this way, you hurt the ministry or organization you are working for or leading.  Some decisions are hard to make because it affects people and in no way do you want to hurt them, but the right thing to do is to make that decision.  Your longing for approval is hurting you and the people you lead.

          Feeling indispensable, that you are the only one that can do a certain job, can fall under this area.  A question to ask is, “Why are you making or not making this decision?”.  Is it to make yourself look good or are you doing it because it is the right decision to make?  Do you feel bad for those who might be adversely affected by the decision (and maybe help in some way to minimize the negativity)?  I sure hope so.  If not, then you are on a power or control trip and love those leadership idols. 

          Peter had an agenda for Jesus and it did not include Jesus dying at the hands of the Jewish religious leaders.  The right thing for Jesus to fulfill was opposite of Peter’s goals and Peter wanted his way. 

          What decisions may you be holding back on that will not make you popular but are the right decisions for your organization or ministry?  In the past have you made decisions that were popular and people liked you for those decisions, but were not the right ones to make?  Doing the right thing is often not the easy decision to make.  Jesus made the right decisions which ultimately had Him killed but we received the blessed gifts of salvation and eternal life. Thank you Jesus for not succumbing to popularity but living and doing the right things all the time.



          In a world where most people focus upon themselves, here is a radical challenge.  Take several minutes per day or even a few times during the week and think about how you can add value to people you come in contact with in the following days.  Then act upon what you come up with. 

          Ask yourself what you can say, give, or do for them that will make your time together unexpected and add value to them.  That is how you can influence people in your world and make a difference.  There are two more parts to this challenge. 

          First find someone with whom can keep you on task, the person who will ask whether you are keeping up with this challenge.  That person will hold you accountable to your goal. 

          Then take a blank notebook or anything that you are able to write stuff down and not loose it because you will then be writing the greatest story ever told.  The Greatest Story Ever Told can only be written by you.  Fill your pages with intentional acts of kindness that add value to people.  Everyday let your words be a record of how you are making positive differences in others.  The key is to intentionally make a great difference with your life. 

          This challenge may seem a little crazy but no matter who you are and where you live, you can intentionally make a difference with your life.  People need to see Jesus being lived out in your life.  As you act upon ideas you come up with on how to impact others, make sure you tell them why you are doing what you are doing.  It is because Jesus first loved you and you are carrying out that love.  1 John is full of how God first loved us and as a result, we are to act on that love.

          Testimonies by many former Muslims indicate that it was the love of Christians that drew them to Jesus.  Jesus said that people in this world would know that we are His disciples by our love for others (John 13:34-35).  It is not the amount of theology we understand, how often we read our Bibles or even attend church, but simple acts of love for people regardless of whether they love us back. 

          The challenge to take time to think of ways to add value to people and keep a journal of how you are impacting others will begin to reveal how Jesus is working in your life (if you allow Him).  Do not underestimate yourself.  All of us have the same Jesus, power and guidance of the Holy Spirit as our pastors, church leaders or the most godly, spiritual person you can think of.  Too often we ask Jesus to give us opportunities to serve Him and have people see Jesus in us, and those opportunities are right in front of our faces.

          The Greatest Story Ever Revealed To The World was Jesus.  This is the sequel, your life’s story.  Write down how He works in your life.  This will encourage and inspire you to remain faithful to Him.  This has a high probability of having you read your Bible more and talk/listen to Him to know how to impact people more. 

          This has the potential for youth groups to shake up their churches, communities are surrounding areas.  That is exactly what Jesus challenges us to do, to impact and make a difference in the lives of people He has us cross paths with.  Represent Jesus well and write it down in your story!