I remember as a young person, admiring the Pastors and Ministers of our movement. In my mind they were (and are) equal to the Apostles. I cannot explain in words my respect for them.
20 years later, I am one of those men. Often I find myself comparing my ministry to those men who I admire. Who I am as a leader, seems far short to that of many of the men around me. Now please don’t think that I am wanting to be them. I realize that we are all unique and gifted according to His desire. But there is something in me that always wants to improve. I never want to become satisfied with who I am as a Man of God. I always want to do more for Him. I want to get closer to who He wants me to be. Like Paul of old. After all he did for the Lord, he said “Oh, that I might know Him…” As great a man as Paul was, he still looked to Jesus for a deeper walk.
I’m not sure we always realize the effect we have on the young people around us. Or for that matter, any saint. One thing that God consistently reminds me of, is that I am an example to those who look up to me. I feel that there is blood on my hands, if I lead an example, that would discourage them from living for God. I have seen leaders in the 20 years I have lived for God, be flippant with regards to their example. Even, careless. As I write this, I go back in my mind to my teen years. There have been more than a couple leaders who have even backslid. In fact, the man who was preaching the night I received the Holy Ghost, is not preaching the Truth today. Is that discouraging? Yes! Do I throw in the towel because of their example? A resounding NO! This race is not for the one who started in it. Nor is it for the fastest one. But it is for the one who finishes it.
I wonder how many are turned away. All because someone who should have been an example, wasn’t. Maybe that’s why Paul said what he did. I believe the example we should emulate is Jesus’. When we seek to follow men, or for that matter, their ways, we will fall so short. I tell the good people who I minister to…”don’t follow me… follow the One who I am following”. “Oh that I might know Him…”