It was great to have very special guest speaker, Roger Glidewell of Global Youth Ministry preaching on Sunday. He reminded us that the future is uncertain, and that our investment into future leaders is part of making the gospel relevant.
You can listen to this weeks podcast right here, and be sure to hit the link to the lifegroup questions below.
If you are the lifegroup leader, have everyone in the group open to this page on their mobile device. Remind them that this is a discussion of Sunday’s message, and that they can always listen to the podcast prior to arriving at lifegroup.
Also, I have a very specific prayer request for your group over the coming few weeks at the bottom of this discussion page.
On Sunday, Roger told the story of “Brother Gary,” who invested into his life. It made a real impact on Roger that Gary would sit in the car and listen to Roger talk. Was there someone that invested into you as a kid? Who was that, and what difference did it make?
How would my life have been different had someone taken an interest and invested into me? What disasters in my life could have been averted? How might I have been a different person?
Moses is generally considered to be the best leader Israel ever had. He led his people out of Egypt, kept them alive for 40 years in the wilderness, mediated between God and Israel, set up a government for them, delivered the 10 commandments, and led them right up to the Promised Land, just before he died.
But the people were still in the wilderness. They had yet to cross over into the promised land. There were battles to be fought, territories to be claimed, land and resources to be allocated properly. How would they do all this without their leader?
Did you know that Moses had a young apprentice? Moses had invested into a young man named Joshua. Fortunately, even though Moses passed away at such a critical time, Joshua had been prepared to take his place.
“Be strong and courageous, for you are the one who will lead these people to possess all the land I swore to their ancestors I would give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do. Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Do you know the story? The people moved into the promised land. They fought their battles, settled into the land, and served God. They experienced God’s blessing in their covenant relationship with Him.
But Joshua never invested into the next generation. He didn’t develop leaders to take his place. Isn’t it interesting what happened next?
After that generation died, another generation grew up who did not acknowledge the Lord or remember the mighty things he had done for Israel.
The Israelites did evil in the Lord’s sight and served the images of Baal. They abandoned the Lord, the God of their ancestors, who had brought them out of Egypt. They went after other gods, worshiping the gods of the people around them. And they angered the Lord.
This is when the nation entered the period of the Judges, a very difficult 400+ years of Israel’s history.
Are we prepared to turn over the next generation to the same fate? What should we do to invest into the next generation? What is Paul’s template for raising up that next generation, ready to lead?
2 TImothy 1:5-6
I remember your genuine faith, for you share the faith that first filled your grandmother Lois and your mother, Eunice. And I know that same faith continues strong in you. This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you.
How are we investing into the difference between “future” and “failure?”
This is both personal and corporate. Will you as a group please pray specifically for our process in bringing a youth pastor on board? We want to have a peace, open doors, and clear direction from God. We also need more consistent giving. If you want to know where we stand today on bringing a youth pastor on board, please check out my previous blog entry, “What’s The Youth Pastor Story?“