Recently, in my Connection Group(what my church calls Sunday School classes), we were having a discussion on…well, I really don’t remember what it was on. Oh..yea, our teacher asked the class if anyone could explain the Trinity to him. And my wife, with many years of youth ministry in her(and our) past, used an egg as an example. There’s the Egg-shell, Egg-Whites, and the Egg-Yolk, all three different things but part of the same egg. And, then our teacher said well, it’s not the same, because it’s the shell, whites and yoke, three separate parts.(And he was somewhat unnecessarily critical in his response). We rebutted, saying it’s three separate parts of the same thing, and so on.
Later in that same class, our book, The Gospel Project, God’s Story part 2, asked the question, “In what ways should our lives demonstrate the saving power of God’s kingdom? How is Christ’s authority demonstrated in our witness as His people?” When my wife gave her answer, she recalled a sermon from Pastor John Mark while we were attending Wornall Road Baptist Church in the Kansas City, Missouri area. This sermon was on the Fruits of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23. And the point she brought up was the comparison Pastor John Mark used about a chain…as a chain is only as strong as it’s weakest link, we are only as strong as our weakest fruit….It was one of those sermons that you hear and you never really forget because it was just so amazingly awesome. Glory to God, His word is just perfect!
Ok…fast forward several hours(we’re getting to why our teacher rocks now). My wife’s phone rings, and it’s our Connection Group teacher’s wife. This was a call she was totally not expecting, but, we both enjoyed. After about one minutes, I could tell she was not on the phone with the wife…it had been passed to our teacher. And he was asking how is responses were. Apparently, the awesomeness of the sermon we hard in Kansas in the latter half of 2011 about the Fruits of the Spirit really struck a nerve with them. His wife had asked him about his weakest fruit, and he said gentleness(this was after the class). Without going into detail about what was said, I was amazed that they called to ask our opinions on his teaching and how he responds as a teacher when someone gives an answer that he doesn’t necessarily want as an answer. And he wanted to know so he could work on that area in his life. Why? Basically, we told him that sometimes he can come across as harsh when a wrong or different answer is given, which most of us are used to. However, it could potentially scare off new(er) people.
It makes me think of Proverbs 27:6, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.” He wanted those wounds so he can grow and allow God to change him in that area. That, my friends, is the mark of a leader.