Titus Email – October 2019

Volume 13, Number 10– OCTOBER, 2019

Greetings.  I trust what is shared this month encourages you to hand the batons God has given you to other servants as He leads you.  Ask Him to show you what you should be “handing off” now and who you need to invest in.  Mike
          A simply made circular piece of metal, a cylinder that passes from one runner to another during relay races is so often the key to winning or losing.  Yet this cylinder has likely been the reason for more disqualifications and losses in the 4 x 100 meter races over the years.   
          At the international level, most of the fastest 100 meter runners in the world compete in this relay.  Most times it is not the speed of the runners that determines gold, silver or bronze but rather how the exchanges occur with that simple cylinder.  You can have the four fastest male or female 100 meter runners on your team but they can have the worst overall time in the race or worst yet, be disqualified because the baton was dropped or the hand off did not occur in the specific twenty meter exchange zone.
          During any relay race there are three exchanges between the four runners.  For three Olympics, (200,2004 and 2008), the USA women had several of the best 100 meter racers in the world.  They were favorites to win the gold each year.  Yet due to miscues in the exchange zone, they were either disqualified or finished disappointingly without even a medal.
          What does this have to do with spiritual things?  In the Christian world we currently have very qualified pastors, preachers and ministry personnel.  We are more collectively educated than all other previous generations.  The amount of Christian information available to our world is astronomically greater than those who have gone before us.  No matter how good or wonderful we currently are, if we do not develop those coming up behind us in the ways of walking faithfully and holy with Jesus, we will have dropped the batons of faith and discipleship, causing the next generations to potentially struggle spiritually or even become disqualified for serving the Lord.
          The key is the passing of the baton of faith and genuine service.  Every believer should mentor and disciple to some extent.  Some of us have been given more opportunity and responsibility to mentor and disciple.  We need to carefully pass the baton and to do it well.
          Ephesians 4:11-13 speaks of spiritual leaders to develop and equip God’s people to do His ministry work, “Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ.
Ministry work to include the pastor is not a solo act.  It is to be a team effort, getting believers in Jesus using their spiritual gifts and various abilities to enhance the Kingdom of God.  Spiritual leaders are to train others in the church to serve others.  Pure and simple. 
Training and empowering the believers is the baton work.  You do not throw it at the person, you hand it off.  That is personal contact that requires practice.  You do that together.  We do ministry together with others.  Ministry is a team effort!
Who has God placed on your team to practice and eventually hand the baton of to?  How you mentor and disciple that person has present and future implications on how well they will be prepared to run their portion of the race their Coach gives them!

To be poised means you are in control of yourself.  You have balance and you are ready to do whatever comes into your life, to meet difficult situations that enter your life.  When events and situations come into our lives, we will respond in some manner which affects the outcome.  When we are poised, our response will be such that we will be ready for whatever comes into our lives resulting in the best possible outcome.
This does not mean you are not afraid because courage does not mean you feel trepidation or some fear but you press on through those emotions to do what needs to be done at the time.  Poise has you ready to do something, whatever the situation. 
          In poise is calmness.  Thomas Jefferson, USA third president, once said, “Nothing gives one person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances.”  Having a sense of calmness often gives you positive power in a situation, one’s chances of success increase and wisdom comes out of being calm.” 
          So how do you develop poise in your life?  Taking a look at Jesus’ life, one activity He consistently did was spend time alone with God, His Father.  Luke 5:16 gives a insider’s view into His life, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”  He spent specific time with His Father.  Jesus even admitted that, “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.” (John 5:19)
          The priority Jesus had was to be in constant connection with God, His Father.  He knew what to do when situations came up because He had an active relationship with His Father.  If as Christians we want to react well and lead a balanced life, spending time with God the Father and Jesus is top priority.  Plus, as we work to be obedient to the things we learn in the Bible and as we pray, listening for the leading of the Holy Spirit which has been as a gift to us, then our responses to life’s events will be God honoring. 
          You want to hang around people who have poise.  They will not freak you out on how they handle situations that come up in their lives.  They will be steady, like an anchor you can hook on to.   Calm, effective leadership while being in a storm established people as completely dependable and a quality leader people will follow. 
A poised Christian leader is anchored in Jesus and in turn, guides others.
          Areas of your life that you struggle in, need to be worked on to help balance your life.  Depending on what your struggle is, will determine the kind of guidance and help you need.  If you have a struggle getting your homework completed, may simply need a conference with your teachers and parents, whereas an addiction of some sort would need a deeper level of help and guidance.  Wherever you are wrestling with an issue, ask for help to develop poise in your life.