REPOST Today’s AMI QT Devotional, provided by Pastor Charles Choe who leads Tapestry Church in Los Angeles, was first posted on June 19, 2014. Charles is a graduate of University of California, Riverside (BA) and Fuller Theological Seminary (M.Div.).
Devotional Thought for This Morning
“Timely Words for Young Leaders”
1 Timothy 4:11-12 (ESV)
Command and teach these things. 12 Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.
If you’ve ever done ministry in an Asian church, you know that there’s often a tacit agreement that older men lead and younger men follow. While wisdom and experience can come with age, it’s not always true that the older men are always more fit to lead. Paul had a similar challenge in the Ephesian church. Timothy, a young leader in his mid-thirties, had the task of leading older men who had been elders for a number of years. Paul had taught these men himself, and yet Timothy was expected to correct some of the things that were going on in the church. That was a tough assignment for the young leader. Timothy needed wisdom and guidance to maneuver through this treacherous path.
So Paul tells Timothy to do two things: Don’t let anyone despise you because you are young, and set an example for the believers. Age should not deter anyone from leading. With humility, a young man can gain the respect of his elders by setting a good example in two areas: speech and conduct. When speech and conduct are marked by love, faithfulness, and purity, Paul says that we earn the right to lead anyone.
So if you want to serve in some leadership capacity at your church, regardless of your age, but especially if you are younger, you must see to it that you guard yourself from being arrogant, rude, critical or sharp in either word or deed. You must learn to be faithful with the small things, showing that you are responsible, reliable and not a promise breaker. And you must remain pure in a world full of vulgarity and sexual misconduct; you must strive to maintain the highest standard of holiness. This is where effective ministry flows from, where people will learn to gladly follow you.
What are some areas you need to work on today? Do you need to clean up your language a bit? Perhaps you need to guard your eyes and your heart from lust? Whatever it may be, consider how the Holy Spirit is convicting you right now through these words. Take some time to repent and pray for God to cleanse you. May others see Christ in your word and deed this day.
Prayer: Lord, in both my speech and my conduct teach me to be loving, faithful, and pure. Amen
Bible Reading for Today: 2 Corinthians 8
Lunch Break Study
Read Titus 1:7-14: 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.  He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.  For there are many who are insubordinate, empty talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision party.  They must be silenced, since they are upsetting whole families by teaching for shameful gain what they ought not to teach.  One of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.”  This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith,  not devoting themselves to Jewish myths and the commands of people who turn away from the truth.
- What is Paul’s description of God’s steward?
- What is one of the main responsibilities of a church leader?
- In contrasting Titus to the Cretans, what is Paul calling Christian leaders to be? How are you doing in this area?
- Someone who is above reproach, which is manifested in not being 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; someone who holds firm to the trustworthy word of God.
- To guard the church against false teaching.
- Paul calls young leaders like Titus and Timothy to always speak the truth and to be industrious in ministry.
Persons who exemplify purity in speech and action are truly an endangered species. The need for such men and women are critical. Are you seriously aiming to be this kind of a person?