I am excited today because later this evening, Lord willing, we will gather together to begin our journey on "Cultivating The Fruit Of The Spirit". I have enjoyed journeying with you as a Wednesday night teacher since 2009, ten years, and it has been such a blessing to grow and watch you to grow as well.
In our growing, I pray that you will know and understand that our growth is supposed to be a part of how we become more of the image of God, the image that the world needs to see.
Through you, in whatever place and in whatever capacity God uses you, you have the opportunity to help lead someone to Christ.
What could be greater? Nothing. But, great work requires great leaders and God is looking for a few great leaders.
Greatness in the world is different from greatness in God. Jesus was the greatest servant leader who ever lived and He is our role model.
When His disciples, basking in the greatness of Jesus and His works, questioned who was the greatest among them, Jesus responded in Luke 22:25-27, "But he said to them, 'The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those in authority over them are called benefactors. But not so with you; rather the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one at the table? But I am among you as one who serves.'"
Beloved, please let me reiterate, through you, in whatever place and capacity God uses you, you have the opportunity to help lead someone to Christ.
And, you are going to have to do it God's way, Jesus' way, the Holy Spirit's way.
In your ministry, lead and serve...like Jesus led and served.
In your auxiliary, lead and serve...like Jesus led and served.
In your home, on your job, in your community, in your school, with the church family, outside of the church family, lead and serve...like Jesus led and served.
He placed others above Himself because He knew He had more to offer to others than others had to offer to Him. And, He gave what He had to offer, salvation.
You, Christian, as a part of the Body of Christ, also have salvation to offer to others. Be a great leader and live in a way that others may receive what you have to offer.
And, it is not something for you, as an individual to seek to accomplish alone. Jesus did not give His words in secret to a few disciples. He spoke to all, including Judas. As they were all in it together, we are in this together, for and with each other.
Let the world see our unity, solidarity, love and support in Christ with and for each other. Let us show the world what great leaders look like from God's perspective.
Beloved, great leaders are not born. Great leaders are taught and trained. Tonight we will embark on another leg of developing into great leaders at HOPE Wednesday. Some people make excuses and will have to give account before God when that day comes. What a sadness it will be for them because they chose to give less than their best. Some people press their way, without excuse, and will have to give account before God when that day comes. What a joy it will be for them because they chose to give their best.
Zion Memorial is looking for and needs great leaders. I want to help make great leaders and look forward to naming you in that number of great leaders when I have to give account before God when that day comes. I am counting on having some joy. And, I pray you, the one with that great leader inside of you, will be with us tonight. You come and invite someone to come be with us.
And, remember, God loves you and I love you too!