As Jesus was preparing to return to His heavenly home, He was aware of the pain, fear, confusion and insecurity this separation would cause His disciples. Therefore, Jesus encouraged them by saying…
6 But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart.No doubt, the disciples were wondering how they could make it without the physical presence of their Lord. But Jesus said to them, basically, “I will be with you always and my Spirit will speak to you, guide you and show you what to do.” Jesus is not only our Savior and Lord, but our “Master Teacher.” He gave us a profound example of what it means to be a compassionate and seminal leader.
7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you…12 I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now 13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. (John 16: 6-7; 12-13, KJV)
In today’s ego driven society, some “leaders” relish the idea that people must be dependent upon them. Their insecure spirits are somehow fed by the idea that wheels stop turning and the proverbial ball stops rolling if they aren’t around and spoon feeding their followers. But godly leaders prepare those entrusted to their care. Godly leaders desire to develop “well-oiled” operations that enable individuals to thrive well beyond the time of their leadership and presence.
Godly leaders seek to teach, model and instill in those who follow them principles that will sink deep down into the followers’ spirits – words of wisdom, caution, encouragement, guidance and hope that will “speak to them” as they face life. Godly leaders don’t abandon or go “AWOL” (absent without leave), but complete the work the Lord has given them to do. When the time is right and the “boosting” season is done, Godly leaders encourage their followers to know, “With the help of the Lord, You can make it!” Jesus understood that His disciples would never become all that He intended them to be as long as He was there with them. He knew that in order for them to grow strong and thrive, they would have to stand up and learn to trust Him, even when they could not see Him.
We see a marvelous example of this concept through NASA’s Solid Rocket Boosters operation. The Boosters are on either side of the “Orbiter,” (spaceship) and are used to propel it beyond the earth’s gravitational pull. At a certain altitude, the boosters separate from the spaceship and it is then freed to pierce through the stratosphere and soar into space. The interesting thing is that the boosters are not destroyed, but parachute down back to the earth and land in the ocean. They are then recovered, refurbished and reused. (Read more about this process by visiting, http://www.nasa.gov/returntoflight/system/system_SRB.html )
As leaders, God uses us to “boost” His people to a certain level – teaching, leading, loving and guiding them by the power of His Holy Spirit. Our role is not “to be with them always…” that’s the Lord’s job! Our role is to help them to grow strong enough to listen to and obey God’s voice, fill up on His Word and live in accordance with His will. If received, all of these things can enable them to resist this world’s “gravitational pull” of sin. Our prayer for them is that they will not only grow, but soar, becoming all that God would have them to be. The Lord then continues to use us in other places and spaces, boosting others as we go…preparing others to do the same.
May we be encouraged by Jesus’ comforting Spirit, reminding us, “You Can Make it!” May we have the grace, faith and security to do the same for those the Lord entrusts to our care.
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Until Faith, Hope and Perseverance,