When the Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy, his son in the Lord, his strong admonition was to do one very important thing as it relates to ministry and leadership development: “…remember to stir up the gift of God that is in you by the laying on my hands”.
Obviously, Paul was interested in seeing Timothy become the great leader he was destined to be. I think, like natural father-figures, mentors (and fathers in the faith) have a general understanding of the potential and destiny contained within their spiritual children. It is awesome to watch others grow and develop their leadership skills. But Paul also gave an important clue that contributes to the overall success of a leader: remember what you’re called to do, and, if you lose sight of this during the process, stir it up again.
The Greek language defines the phrase “stir up” as “Fan the Flame”. A fire needs three elements: a combustible item, something that will cause combustion, and oxygen to keep the flame burning. This “Fan the Flame” is the picture Paul is giving to Timothy, his protégé. In essence, Paul was saying, “Hey. Sometimes, in life and ministry, you find yourself off track a bit. It’s OK when this happens. But, please remember, you’ve got to fan the flame back to the place of an inferno once again.
How I wish you and I could “Fan the Flame” for others, but we cannot. We can provide inspiration and others things that will bring about a fire. But, in the truest sense, each of us bears the responsibility to “Fan the Flame”.
How do I “Fan the Flame”, you ask? A fire is maintained through remaining consistent with Bible reading, prayer and intercession and keeping intimacy in our relationship with the Lord. As elementary as this short list is, these three things seem to the first things we let go of when life gets busy. We cave into the pressures of life and ministry, forgetting Who our source is.
Remember, being a great leader in God’s kingdom begins with spending more than adequate time with the One Who will inspire and release greatness from within us. Be challenged and be blessed…
Posted on Thu, June 2, 2011
by Bill Faught, Jr. filed under