Summary: Loving leaders lead and faithful followers follow.

Leading and Following

1 Peter 5:1-5

Rev. Brian Bill

March 14-15, 2015

It’s been almost two months and I can finally talk about how the Packers unraveled in the NFC Championship game. I actually wasn’t able to watch the game because I had a meeting. I’m glad now that I didn’t watch it. Jason Crosby helped me recreate what happened.

Seattle trailed 19-7 with about four minutes remaining in the game and had been ineffective on offense all game. With a little over 2-minutes left, the Seahawks Russell Wilson scored on a 1-yard touchdown run to cut the Packer lead to 19-14.

The Seahawks chose to do an onside kick. With two minutes and nine seconds remaining in the game, the loudest stadium in America fell silent. The Packers Andrew Quarless turned to Brandon Bostick and said, “I got this guy, you got this guy. You know your assignment?” To which Bostick replied, “Yeah. I got this.” Bostick’s assignment was to block for Jordy Nelson who was lined up right behind him. They had practiced this play dozens, if not hundreds of times before.

The Seahawks lined up for the onside kick. Their kicker drove the ball hard into the ground causing the ball then to bounce high into the air. Brandon Bostick, whose job was to block, forgot his assignment and chose instead to try and catch the ball. In Bostick’s own words, “When the ball appeared in front of me, just floating in the air, my mind went blank. I forgot everything I was supposed to do. It’s not that CenturyLink Field was too loud, or that I crumbled under the pressure of the situation. Instinct just kicked in. The ball was in front of me and I wanted to grab it. I jumped up and reached for it…and my life changed forever.”

Bostick, who wasn’t supposed to be catching the ball to begin with, failed to grab it and Seattle recovered the ball at the 50-yard line. That lead to a 24-yard touchdown run by Marshawn Lynch and the Seahawks would go on to win in overtime, 28-22.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers nailed it when he said: “We gave it away.” Packer coach Mike McCarthy added, “It’s important for everybody to do their job. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case on that play.”

Brandon Bostick has since been waived by the Packers and is now a Minnesota Viking. I think that’s where all ex-Packers end up.

In a similar way, it’s important in the church that people play their positions well. I am so thankful for the staff team God has assembled at Edgewood. Sheila Mills is our Office Manager and Marie Guyton is our Office Assistant. They both do a super job serving, don’t they? Kelli Rideout is our new Saturday morning receptionist and is doing a great job.

Doesn’t Sheila Kuriscak have a marvelous ministry as the Christian Education Director as well as heading up our women’s ministry? Alisha Miller gives detailed attention to our Nursery ministry as she schedules our loving servants. BTW, we still need a number of servants to jump in and serve at one, or several, of our Easter Now services in the Nursery and Children’s Ministry. And Joe and Janelle Wells, along with Joy Greer, do a fantastic job of keeping our facilities clean.

The title of our message today is “Leading and Following” from 1 Peter 5:1-5. We could summarize the sermon like this: “Leaders lead and followers follow.” On God’s team everyone has a position to play and a task to tackle. We’ll complete our verse-by-verse study of 1 Peter next weekend with a message called, “Watchful Warfare.”

On Palm Sunday we’ll focus on “Worship Fit for a King.” And then on Easter weekend, we’ll have two services on Saturday night at 5 and 7 and two on Sunday morning at 8:30 and 10:30 as we urge people to make their biggest decision ever in a message entitled, “Easter Now.” We’ll kick off a new series after Easter called “Growing in Grace” from 2 Peter. I’ve asked Pastor Brown to preach the first weekend in June. After this series we’ll be praying through the psalms this summer. It’s always nice to know where we’re headed, right?

Grab your Bible and turn to 1 Peter 5:1-5. Peter moves from persecution and suffering to how the church is to be fed and led. In order to survive suffering, a church needs loving leaders and faithful followers. When each person on the team tackles his or her task, the kingdom wins. We’ll look at the requirements, the responsibilities, the reward and conclude with our response.

1. The Requirements. The first thing Peter establishes is that godly men are to lead the church. Look at verse 1: “The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed.” The term “elders” can refer to four different groups.

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