Summary: Four points of an effective leader
You cannot teach others what you cannot teach yourselves--1 Timothy 1:3-7
“They do not know what they are talking about”
Humans are funny! It’s odd how I’ve noticed that sometimes we as humans can get ourselves in some pretty stick circumstances. It’s funny how sometimes when we are around certain people we will begin spouting off something about the subject, whether or not we know it is correct or not. I’ve witnessed it at Goodyear when a manager would begin to tell a bigger boss what the problem was( or what he thought it was). All of a sudden the boss would ask him a question related to it, and the manager would have this big giant duh look on his face. Why did this person desire to try to make himself appear superknowledgeable about something he didn’t even remotely have a clue about. The same is true in this passage of scripture. Paul is writing Timothy to remind him that he wants him to command certain people not to teach. Why didn’t Paul want these people to teach? They were teaching false doctrine. Why then were they teaching false doctrine? Surely nobody with the right heart would teach false doctrine. Unless, they didn’t know it themselves. “Some have wandered away from these and turned to meaningless talk.” Wandered away from what? Love which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. They were trying to get the respect that teachers deserve. But they didn’t. Again why? Because they weren’t willing to teach themselves the principles first.
Misguided motives--One of the biggest causes of anybody being ineffective is having misguided motives. This is also one of the most dangerous traps to fall into as well. When I view anyone’s motives I can see them in two different ways. They are either intentional or unintentional. Let’s read in the sixth chapter of Matthew to see what Jesus has to say about misguided motives. “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. Let me get this straight is Jesus saying that those people were standing on those street corners and in the synagogues, reciting their prayers, and having their written prayers on their heads to be seen by men. Surely that didn’t go on? Surely that doesn’t go on? Do you think that people actually come to church to be seen by people? I wonder why people come to church? Do they come because they’ve always come? Do they come because there parents make them come? Do they come because they want to hear music? Do they come because they want to hear the greatest, most magnificent, stupendous preacher on the face of the earth? NO. I pray that we come to church because we want to meet the God who made us and gain a closer relationship with him. We as leaders. What are out motives? Do we put on this production because we want to be seen by men? Do we do this Church thing because this is the way its supposed to be done? Or can we as leaders continually reevaluate everything to see if it is in fact drawing us closer to Christ Jesus? Here is the kicker to misguided motives. Are they intentional or unintentional? Why do we do the things we do the way we do? If our motives are to intentionally to be seen by men, then listen to what Jesus says, “...they have received there reward in full”.
If you do not take care of yourself mentally and physically.
It is so easy to be ineffective as a Pastor, a lay-leader or a christian in general if we do not take care of ourselves. I Timothy 5:23. In reading along in the fifth chapter of I Timothy, we see all of Paul’s exhortations to young Timothy dealing with widows and elders. In Chapter 6 Paul is giving young Timothy again instructions concerning slaves. Packed right in between is a small verse that tells Timothy stop drinking only water, and have a little wine for your frequent stomach ailments. Now before you go off saying I said you could get drunk, don’t. The wine was for his stomach ailments. Yes I know some of you have stomach problems. But, we have things called medicine today. So packed among all these things that Paul wants Timothy to do is a small portion of scripture that says, “Oh yeah, take care of yourself too.” Me and Joey have drove the horse into the ground that being a good worker is good, but if you don’t take care of yourself you’ll end up and ineffective worker. Stemming from this, we often take too much on ourselves mentally as well. Jesus tells us to cast all of our cares upon him. I have concerns every saturday night when I’m still sweating to find a sermon idea. Some years back a certain float ran out of gas in the tournament of roses parade. Funny enough it turned out to be the Standard Oil co. float. You would think that they would have the foresight to check those things, but they didn’t. Sometimes, we forget too. We forget to put gas in our tanks. We try to do and do and do without preparing ourselves physically and mentally.