Titus Email – August 2019

Volume 13, Number 8– AUGUST, 2019

Greetings.  I apologize that this is late this month.  I returned to the United States August 7th and then have been involved with a couple of teenager activities and family activities, which has made the past two weeks fly by.  The Summit was superb.  I will be sharing about the Summit in the next few weeks to give people an update of what is happening in WILD.                                                            Thanks, Mike

Idol of Comfort – part 3

When there is an unwillingness to develop others and especially the next generations, you just not impact others but potentially many others.  If we do not aggressively help mold and shape the minds of people, especially young people, their eternity is at stake. 

Now we are not responsible for the eternal state of a person but we are responsible to offer to others what we have and are learning from the Scriptures.  This includes the obedience to and the lack of following the Holy Spirit’s via the Word and sensitivity to His voice.  The wisdom we have gained over the years and the wise counsel we received can be passed on. 
WILD intentionally includes “Development” in our name because training gives the idea of completing a course or lesson, and then you are what that lesson describes.  True leadership development is a process and takes tedious time for maturity. 

Counting the cost is not talked about much in Christian leadership circles.  Jesus was quite clear in Luke 14, that when someone does not count the cost and cannot complete the responsibility, that person is ridiculed and can face very embarrassing or life-threatening consequences.  Thinking that being a spiritual leader will not affect your comfort level is unwise thinking. 

Maturity as a spiritual leader takes a great deal of time and you never stop growing.  Wrestling with the leadership idol of comfort, can cause someone to think they have arrived and do not need to develop more, thinking they do not need to deal with any more difficult situations.  The temptation is when we are not given the possible costs involved in spiritual leadership, we may not be prepared for them or think that there is something wrong in one’s leadership because of what you are facing.  God never promised the Christian life nor being a leader for Him would be easy and a life of comfort.

Being a real spiritual leader means you serve.  It means you get involved in the lives of others, setting aside your own comfort to serve the needs of others.  If you do not want to serve, do not aspire nor tell people you are a Christian leader.  You may be a leader but not a Christian, biblical leader.  Having a title within in a ministry or church setting does not make you a biblical leader either.  God will never ordain a person as a spiritual leader of His because of the titles given to us here on earth.  We look at outward appearances and titles while God searches our hearts!

Some of the greatest spiritual leaders we have encountered in our lives never had a title given to them.  They understood what it cost to be a disciple of Jesus and lived it out often without fanfare or the desire to be recognized.  Understanding the cost of spiritual leadership via a servant attitude, they have invested in the lives of others, painstakingly pouring their lives into younger, less mature Christians to raise these Christians up to serve Jesus in ways beyond what they had attained.

They knew spiritual leadership equaled spiritual warfare and aggressively pursued their relationship with Jesus and consistently increased their listening skills become more greatly entuned to the Holy Spirit.  They understood what they were involved in had eternal ramifications, and pursuing being comfortable was not part of their vocabulary.  Perhaps the greatest dynamic was many may never have considered themselves as leaders, they were just simply being a disciple. 


We fail when we stay down, not get back up and are willing to learn from our experiences and then try again doing things a little differently.  Making excuses and blaming others when things don’t go the way we expect or want them to go is not the way to live life.  Partly because it is difficult as Christians to be vulnerable with one another because we want to put on our “everything is wonderful” masks.  Throughout the New Testament we are encouraged to love one another, build up each other and help one another to restore the fallen Christian, carrying or coming along side to be of a positive assistance (Galatians 6:1-2, Ephesians 4:29-32).
          If we would be willing to become more vulnerable, the Christian community would become much safer to fail forward.  Again, this is not a statement encouraging living a sin filled life and justifying it by saying you are learning to fail positively.   There is a false sense in our Christian world that we are supposed to be nice little perfect Christians, that when we attempt something for Jesus, it is to go perfectly the first time.
          Why do I not want to be open with the people I go to church with?  Because I don’t know how you will react when you find out I don’t do things right and make mistakes.  There are time I still sin (and sin well).  Other times I attempt something and things do not come out perfectly.  I do confess I was not a straight “A” student, that I did fail some tests in my educational life and made many mistakes in all my years being involved in youth ministry.  There are young people I have gotten mad at because I had a bad attitude.  I have not always treated my wife like Jesus would want me to and over the years, I incorrectly disciplined my children.  Am I a failure? 
          Being critical is another reason we do not encourage people to fail forward, to learn from their mistakes and become better people or more accomplished at what we are attempting.  Some Christians look for opportunities to nail other Christians for not doing things “correctly” even though most things in life, there is more than one way to accomplish a task. 
          There is also some jealousy that needs to addressed too, as there are Christians  among us (maybe you or me) who when someone tries something and does not immediately succeed and fails, we cheer on the inside, though on the outside, we put on a good Christian face and encourage the person to keep trying what they attempting.  Grow up, confess that jealousy as sin and change your attitude.  Chances are you are jealous because the other person attempted something you did not have the courage to attempt.
          Then some of us think that a person must have sin in their life when things do not go perfectly.  Unfortunately, numerous cultures believe that if a person has a handicap of some sort, that family is cursed and/or sin is dominate in their family lines.  The Bible instructs us to bring glory to God in everything we do and say.  There was only one perfect man who walked on this earth, the rest of us will make mistakes attempting life.  Yes, sin can be in our lives causing things to not go right but we have seen where people have been sinful and things from an earthly point of view, are working out. 
          Seek to honor the Lord with all aspects of your life.  Deal with sin as the Holy Spirit shows you and then know that what you attempt at life will rarely be done perfectly.  Pursue bringing glory to the name of Jesus.  That is failing forward.