|Photo Courtesy of Daniel Horacio Agostini via Flickr|
Recently one sunny Sunday morning, I played hooky from the church that employs me. Being a pastor, Sundays are a pretty big deal for us (some would erroneously argue it’s the only day we work). Yet on this day I wasn’t available at my house of worship. I didn’t sleep in; in fact, I woke up even earlier that morning than what was my usual routine. I wasn’t on vacation, though I did take a field trip.
My wife and I, along with another leader from our church, visited a sister church in our area that particular morning. The three of us were there to watch and learn from a church with which our church has a growing relationship – a partnership, if you will. This church is a little larger than ours, and a little further along than where ours is currently. Who better to teach us?
So we spent approximately 5 hours watching every detail possible. Our hosts were most gracious in answering any and all questions we had. They introduced ideas and concepts that were beyond our mindset at the time. We left that afternoon with our minds whirling. We were excited to realize that there were many areas back at our home church where we were already doing a tremendous job. Equally exciting, though, was being inspired to share ideas for those areas where we could improve. We’ve have already begun to implement some of the changes that we borrowed from our friends.
In our Christian life, it’s crucial to have help along the way. If you attack life all alone, at some point, you are going to struggle. When you are left to your own self, the devil will eventually gain a foothold, even if you are one of strongest Christians. Why not partner with someone else who can offer a kind word of encouragement or even a teaching criticism? Partnering with someone further developed than yourself gives you a chance to learn from their successes and shortcomings.
Proverbs 27:17 states – “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.”
Who in your life is your iron? Who have you strategically reached out to for support? And maybe more importantly, are you the iron in someone else's life?