Theme of the Week: Disciple-Makers
Bible Verse: Hold on to the pattern of wholesome teaching you learned from me—a pattern shaped by the faith and love that you have in Christ Jesus. Through the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within us, carefully guard the precious truth that has been entrusted to you. 2 Timothy 1:13-14 NLT
Scripture Reading: 2 Timothy 1:1-14; 2:1-13; Acts 16:1-4
Do you remember your first job? Whether it was pumping gas, grueling yard work, or stocking boring shelves, you likely had someone “teach you the ropes” before you ventured out on your own. My first real job was in a carpet and furniture store. The extent of my expertise in this field was limited to walking on carpet and sitting on the furniture. But some senior leaders pulled me aside to teach me the ropes – how to cut and roll carpet, assemble a new piece of furniture, drive the company van, and successfully deliver a purchase to a home. All the skills I learned came through some leaders who poured into me and gave this young kid a chance.
Discipleship is most effective when it is shaped by personal investment – time, energy, and patience. The apostle Paul gives a great lesson in personal investment. He met a young and respected leader named Timothy on his second missionary journey (AD 49-52) in the city of Lystra (Acts 16). Paul quickly identified Timothy’s impressive potential and recruited him to be his traveling companion, taking him under his wing, discipling and mentoring him in the faith, and preparing him to become an even more effective church leader.
Paul invested in Timothy’s discipleship:
- Passionately – he was emotionally invested – 2 Timothy 1:3-4
- Prayerfully – he invested prayer and encouragement – 2 Timothy 1:5-7
- Practically – he wrote extensive letters (1 & 2 Timothy) – 2 Timothy 1:2
- Personally – he modeled faith, courage, and a servant’s heart. – 2 Timothy 3:10-11
Timothy was full of potential and energy but needed a guiding hand to grow his leadership. John Maxwell notes a simple pattern to invest in someone else’s leadership: “I do it. I do it and you watch. You do it and I watch. You do it. You do it and someone else watches.” 1
Paul invested in Timothy, and the investment paid off. God used him to shape a life and a leader. We might not be the apostle Paul but don’t underestimate the potential of your investment in someone to help them become all that God has purposed.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for the investment that your servants, my parents, family, friends, and mentors, have made in me. Help me to invest in significant ways in the lives of those around me. Amen.
Reflection: How can I make a greater investment in someone else’s life – passionately, spiritually, practically, and personally? Who can I pray for or send a word of encouragement to today?
1 John C. Maxwell, The 360 Degree Leader: Developing Your Influence from Anywhere in the Organization.
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