Moses taught Joshua, Naomi taught Ruth, Elijah taught Elisha, and Paul taught Timothy. Mentoring is a Biblical model for formation. It is one of the most powerful tools that God can use to shape us to be more like Him. Much could be said for the social or vocational advantages that are inherent to the mentoring process, but one of the most valuable aspects of the unique relationship between mentor and mentee is that God uses it to shape the things we love.
Jesus invites each of His followers to join Him in his mission of love to help those who are far from God find a restored relationship with their Maker. Yet, most of us disciples struggle to know how to best serve those who don’t believe or behave like us. Fortunately, Jesus models an intentional approach for loving those outside His church. In this Sunday’s message and service we discover His way and receive His help to love our neighbors well.
Who did you vote for? How do you reconcile Genesis 1 and science? Should we baptize infants? Should children have cell phones? People have disagreements and genuine followers of Jesus have disagreements too. When these disagreements exist within the church should we ignore them, fight over them or seek to compromise in them? What if the way of Jesus was applied to disagreements among his followers? What if we showed the younger generation and the watching world that it is possible to love God and love others by humbly listening even in the midst of our differences?
Our world is full of hurting people waiting to be heard. Jesus’ solution is laborers—laborers who listen. What does it mean to be slow to speak? And what does it look like to be God’s laborer who truly listens?
When we have an opportunity to walk along someone else in their journey with God (i.e. mentor them / disciple them / guide them) what should we do? Rather than quickly grabbing a book to read together or making a list of topics to address, what if we followed the way of Jesus? After His resurrection, Jesus walked alongside two followers and modeled a beautiful, loving, freeing and life transforming approach for discipleship. In this passage we discover that loving listening precedes helping others grow in their relationship with God.
Have you ever walked away from a conversation thinking, “Why did I talk so much? Why didn’t I ask at least one question? Do you think they noticed?” How many questions did Jesus ask? Can you recall some of His best ones? What do you think is Jesus’ most famous question? What if we really followed Jesus? What if we sat with people, listened to people and asked them questions? Can you imagine how surprised and grateful our family, friends, classmates and coworkers would be
During His time on earth Jesus taught, healed, recruited, launched a worldwide movement and listened to people. Today we begin observing the Gospel writers portrayal of Jesus as a listening King who humbled Himself, sacrificed His time and gave people His love by sitting down to listen to them. Can you imagine the world’s astonishment if His followers did the same?
Unlike most rulers, Jesus did not have security guards to shield him from the people. Rather, He came low to bend His ear and share His words with ordinary people. A man with diseased skin, a woman with fever, violent homeless men and a grieving father all received visit, experienced a conversation and were changed by Jesus. In this message we discover that the One who is exalted at the Father’s right hand still comes near, converses with and can change our lives forever.
Why does Jesus call us to follow Him and abide in Him? Some people assume we should follow Jesus so we can be with God when we die. While this is a significant part of a disciple’s hope, Jesus has a vision for our days between when we become His disciples and when we breath our last breath. He summons us to follow Him in order to give us a purpose. The reason He calls us to follow and abide is so He can work in and through us as we join Him on His mission to love and serve our hurting world (i.e. become “fishers of men”). He empowers all of His disciples to pray, to serve and to testify wherever we go so that His kingdom will come on earth as it is in heaven. Now that’s discipleship. That’s living!
Why did followers of Jesus change their day of worship from the Jewish Sabbath to the day of Christ’s resurrection? Why did they transition from an annual Passover to a frequent celebration including the bread and the cup? Why do followers of Jesus continue today to sing about, talk about, read about and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus? While there are many reasons to celebrate Jesus’ emergence from the tomb, on this Resurrection Sunday we reflect and give thanks to God for three. Through the resurrection of Jesus, God blesses us with certainty in our faith, clarity in our hope and charity in our neighborly love.