Sunday, November 11, 2007

Thankful For: Godly Leaders

In keeping with my Thankful Theme for the month, and since I didn't post one yesterday, I have a double shot for today.

First, I'm thankful that Michael Haykin admits he's a heretic. If this brilliant brother can admit this, then the rest of us are in real fine company. Now before you get all up in arms, let me explain. Many years ago when I was attending this brother's church, he made a comment one Sunday morning from the pulpit that if you hadn't read Pilgrim's Progress, he questioned your salvation. Of course he was kidding, but there were a few folks there that knew I hadn't read it, and they looked at me with that suspicious-one-eyebrow-askew look as if to say "there she is, burn her now!" They were kidding as well but it became sort of a running theme for a few years whenever it came up, that I was the resident heretic. Incidentally enough, years after this I met a brother online from Texas, and he said exactly the same thing when Pilgrim's Progress was mentioned. He laughed when I told him my own pastor said the same thing. (I did finally read it the summer I was pregnant with my youngest, so I am no longer a heretic, thankfully).

Secondly, and on a more serious note, I'm quite thankful for my Sunday school teacher Ben. Today our lesson was on Jeremiah chapter 23 and more specifically the call for faithful leaders. Ben pointed out that there are three clear characteristics of solid, godly leaders:

[1] Knowing and doing God's will
[2] Being an example by their life
[3] Able to give godly counsel to those they are in leadership over

He went into more detail on each point, and reminded us all to be thankful and to be praying for such leaders in our lives (our pastor first, but other leaders that influence our lives as well, such as our children's Sunday school teachers, community leaders and political leaders as well). I would add to that the various evangelical leaders, speakers, authors and pastors that we're all influenced by, both online and offline. Men such as Michael Haykin, John Piper, John MacArthur and James White immediately come to mind. This list will of course be a little different for everyone, but praying for and being thankful for these men is a good thing to be doing, especially in our modern time of truth being questioned and godly reverance being a thing to simply toss out the window as we "contextualize" our message right into oblivion.

Ben also pointed out that in our own lives as well, in some context or another, we are also leaders and having an influence over someone else. Whether that is with our children, at work, at church, at school, in the community, or whatever place the Lord has put us to be in leadership over someone; we should also be displaying the 3 characteristics of godly leadership.

It was a convicting message and I was grateful to hear it. Usually I have a bit of a hard time struggling to stay focused in Sunday school because I'm so tired. Even today I did pass a note (yes, I pass notes in church, it's a girl thing) to Kev that said "I'm sleepy!" but I sure payed attention to this message.