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Developing Your Leadership to Serve the Lord

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Leadership seems to be a constant topic for church staff especially in relation to developing leaders who lead well in the church. Often the view is that leadership training done inside the church is only for use within the ministries of the church. When leadership has a narrow view, believers are not as interested in attending leadership classes, watching leadership videos or learning from articles and books on leadership.

A better view of leadership is seeing that leadership is applied through many facets of life. One may be a Sunday School leader and a deacon within the church, and that same person may be the lead director for a department in his job, lead his wife and children and serve as a volunteer soccer coach in the local soccer association. If the view of leadership is limited or compartmentalized, it is limiting when and where you can serve the Lord. One who is a leader in the church should also be leading outside the walls of the church building. The same biblical principles that are used for church leadership can be applied in coaching young boys or girls in soccer while leading their parents as well. “Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord and not for people” is a word from Paul in Colossians. The context is living your life for the Lord in your home and at work. The Bible does not put faith in compartments. Faith is not limited to the church building so leadership in a biblical way is not limited to Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights. 

In my limited number of years in ministry I have watched as men and women lead one way in their church but do not apply the same principles when leading outside the church. Employees are not cared for, husbands or wives are not loved and children are treated as a nuisance while at church the same person cares for those in their Sunday School, shows a genuine love for those around them and is willing to bend over backwards so kids can have the best experience possible. There cannot be a disconnect in using leadership to serve the Lord in the church and leading the way the world leads outside the church.

Are you excited about growing as a leader to be able to lead well in the church AND lead well in the other parts of your life? Have you thought about the training and discipleship you receive at church being applied to serving the Lord outside the church? Opportunities exist at Faith Baptist to develop as a leader but you must have a bigger view than just serving the Lord for an hour a week to get excited about the opportunities. What if Faith became a training ground for leadership and believers in Christ went out from Faith to serve the Lord in their homes, jobs, schools and other areas of life? My prayer is that you would broaden your view of how God can use your leadership for the sake of His name in Wichita Falls and among the nations.

Jeff White
Associate Pastor of Families/Missions
Posted by Jeff White with 0 Comments

How Do I Persevere Despite My Circumstances?

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I love to garden. Basically I love to see things grow, especially pretty plants. I’ve never really grown vegetables, but recently we discovered that we are expecting…wait for it…one tiny tomato! Now if we can keep the squirrels and birds away from it, we just might have one fresh tomato to enjoy this year. Ah, the simple pleasures. I began my love for gardening back in South Texas where many plants will live all year round. Through the years, I have experienced some interesting things in my world of gardening.

There is an old saying, “bloom where you are planted.” But have you ever heard the saying, “Grow, even when you are pulled up” or “Grow even if it hurts”? A few years back, Linda’s dad and mom helped us do some remodeling of a bathroom. Since we had to tap into the water line, we had to take out a flower bed that was filled with blooming Kalanchoes (I usually pronounce it “Kah-Lahn-chos”, but the real pronunciation is “Ka-lan-ko-es”. I know you are impressed!)  I planted the plants in a temporary spot just to keep them alive. To my surprise, the plants began to grow and bloom even better than before; so, naturally, I left them there.

Much later (like 2-3 months) I noticed that I had left one of the plants in a bucket in the garage. The plant was kind of dry (understatement), but it had actually sprouted a little green bud at the top.  This plant was growing in spite of a lack of water and dirt.  

Not long after that, I decided to cut back the cactus next to my kitchen window.  It is a very interesting cactus, and as you might expect, in South Texas it was becoming like a tree!  I had to keep pruning it back, so that it wouldn’t fall over in the wind.

I knew that, if I put the prickly little pieces in my compost pile, I would have a very interesting time spreading my compost…ouch!  It hurts just to think about it!  So I put my cuttings in a garbage can in the garage, thinking that when they dried up I would put them out with the trash.  After about six weeks, I went back to the trash can and looked inside.  And to my amazement each of the cuttings had sprouted and, yes, they were continuing to grow.  I knew cacti were resilient, but that is amazing.

Can you see a correlation here?  Now I don’t recommend that you try this, but I do believe that there is a lesson to be learned here.  When times get tough (and they will) if our roots are firmly planted in Jesus Christ, then we can survive and grow in Him.  As a matter of fact, many times our growth is more prolific when we have gone through trials, similar to the way the Kalanchoes thrived in their new location.

"Therefore, since we have been declared righteous by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. We have also obtained access through him by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.  And not only that, but we also rejoice in our afflictions, because we know that affliction produces endurance, endurance produces proven character, and proven character produces hope." (Romans 5:1-4 CSB)

How encouraging is that!   Our trials produce endurance or perseverance, which produces character, which produces hope. Hang in there!  Keep growing and you just might see some little sprouts of green in spite of your circumstances! 

"…so do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.  For in just a little while,

'He who is coming will come and will not delay.
But my righteous one will live by faith.
And if he shrinks back,
I will not be pleased with him.'

But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved.” (Hebrews 10:35-39 NIV)

So when this world throws something at you that causes you to feel cut off and discouraged, don’t shrink back (or shrivel up); keep trusting in God.  You may even find that your greatest growth took place when you were feeling “thrown away.”

To God Be the Glory!

Doug Burton
Minister of Music and Senior Adults
Posted by Doug Burton with 0 Comments

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