In Lectures to My Students Charles Spurgeon titled the first chapter The Minister’s Self Watch, quoting the proverb, “If the axe be dull, the workman must exert much force”. A wholly yielded man is a powerful weapon in the hands of God, and a damage dealer for the kingdom. The first question to ask yourself is “Are you a man worth sending?” God’s glory, the expansion of the Kingdom, and blood bought souls are hanging in the balance. It’s easy to imagine why Paul raised the bar so high when their were such high stakes. This is why Paul stated that he was “dominated by the faith of God’s elect” (Titus 1:3). Paul knew that God had targeted people on the far side of his own personal hardships, and therefore the love of Christ compelled Paul and drove him on incessantly through shipwrecks, beating, and near starvation. To sacrificially endure hardship like a good soldier, for the sake of saving others requires a depth of character few possess.
Here is Paul’s curriculum vitae criteria for leadership:
“If anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. For an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. (Titus 1:6-8)
If these are the requirements for the leaders who replace the church planter, then we can safely assume that they are requirements for the church planting leader. This is your bootcamp. If you make it through this list of hurdles, crawling under the barbed wire of live ammunition fired in the following blogs, and emerge on the other side caked in mud, but breathing, you will be ready to go on to Jump School. Otherwise, it is time to spin the pizza sign on a street corner. Do everybody a favor and resign to do anything besides enlist as an elder. If your life is not an example, then you shouldn’t be leading.
Buy Peyton’s newest book “Reaching The Unreached: Becoming Raiders of the Lost Art” over on Amazon.com. You can also download a free chapter and watch a cool trailer for the book HERE or click the image below.