In July of 2013, I felt a stirring in my spirit that it was time to seek out a new place to serve and to minister. This was an exciting time and scary time as well. We absolutely loved our life and church in Springfield, MO, but knew we could never be content if we did not obey the Lord's leading. Looking for a new job is a bit intimidating, looking for a new job as a pastor is a bit overwhelming. After sending out a couple resumes and turning down a very generous offer from a very gracious congregation, we realized that we had been called to plant a church. Over the years, we have been surrounded by many gifted and talented people. As the Lord began to stir my heart towards a new work, I fully understood that I could not do this on my own. I am still amazed 4 years later that our teammates here at The Table actually said "Yes!". I am still deeply grateful that they packed up their stuff, secured jobs in the area, and moved away from their families to pursue a unified dream and calling.
In Acts 16, Paul and Silas find a new team member. Will he say, "Yes!" as well? Take a look:
16 Paul went first to Derbe and then to Lystra, where there was a young disciple named Timothy. His mother was a Jewish believer, but his father was a Greek. 2 Timothy was well thought of by the believers in Lystra and Iconium, 3 so Paul wanted him to join them on their journey. In deference to the Jews of the area, he arranged for Timothy to be circumcised before they left, for everyone knew that his father was a Greek. 4 Then they went from town to town, instructing the believers to follow the decisions made by the apostles and elders in Jerusalem. 5 So the churches were strengthened in their faith and grew larger every day.
Recruiting a team member is tough. Recruiting a team member with Paul's resume would seem a bit more difficult. Take a look at what Paul was going through as he was recruiting people. In 2 Corinthians 6, he tells us "We have been beaten, been put in prison, faced angry mobs, worked to exhaustion, endured sleepless nights, and gone without food." Remember that as Paul and Silas recruited Timothy, they were not just gaining a set of helping hands. They were also gaining a new mouth to feed (when resources were already tight) and a new disciple to invest in (when time was already at a premium). We know from later writings that Paul encouraged Timothy to teach the things that Paul taught him to other trustworthy people who will teach them to others. No matter where you are at on the spectrum (church planter, founding team member, team member, faithful gatherer, or occasional attender), you were meant to share the Scriptures and share your resources. Who are you sharing the Scriptures with? Who are you sharing your meals with?
With sincere love for each of you,