Sanctus Real has a song called “Lead Me.” The chorus lyrics harken to a man’s wife and children calling out to him, and, in turn, his own crying out to God “lead me with strong hands.” In many ways, I think about this song every day. I consider how I love my wife, how I partner with and support her, how I love my boys, and what example I set for them, all in light of my calling as a minister in Christ Jesus. They are, before any church I’ve been in the pulpit in, my first and foremost ministry, the one God ordained on the day I said “I do.” Many of the qualifications for biblical leadership depend on how my home is run. This morning, two of my boys came with me to church. At 6:45, in below freezing weather, they trekked with me into a freezing cold truck, and we headed to church. Both of them got up at 5:30, only one read his bible (that’s the intent of the 5:30 wake up call, according to my oldest), and so we talked about it. I explained to my second oldest that reading the Bible isn’t about knowing what it says, it’s about hearing from God, and if we keep its pages shut, we don’t or can’t know what God has for us. Instead of riding his tail for it, I used it as an opportunity to try and lead him to understand why it is so important.
Whether we have families or not, all of us are leading someone. People are watching us. God has ordained you for your family, for your job, for your school, or wherever else He has led you for the purpose of bringing Him glory. You are a priest in the house of God, you are the Temple of the Holy Spirit, where Christ has put His name. How are you leading those God has given you influence over? Are you excusing sin, and keeping God at arm’s length? Are you quoting scripture but not living it out? Or are you making your walk with Christ the central part of your life, admitting your mistakes, and growing in Him from your failures? How are you leading others? Compromise is easy; promises are easy to make; living for Christ and leading others to do the same requires true faith. The world, and those God has entrusted to you are calling out to you “lead me.” God is challenging you to lead them to Him. Will you answer the call? 1 Timothy 4
Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared, who forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods that God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer.
If you put these things before the brothers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed. Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance. For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe.
Command and teach these things. Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching. Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you. Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress. Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.