Verse 17 Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do.
Yesterday we were talking about running the race. One of the techniques that racers use is drafting. It is a way of positioning yourself behind a forerunner so that they are breaking the air which causes them drag – resistance of air. Who should we be drafting?
Paul called his readers to follow his example. This wasn’t Paul begging for followers for himself, he was saying, follow me as I follow the Lord. Paul knew that we needed examples to look to so that we can see how to live. There are various places in life where we follow the leader, so to speak. As children we try to be like our parents. As teenagers we ape our friends or the latest fad. Then as young adults we start having bosses to follow and the list goes on. I mean why should everyone make their own mistakes? Why can’t we learn from each other?
Drafting in racing works because the leader is making the way. Paul was trying to say that is how spiritual leadership should be too. But who should be our leaders in our spiritual life? Jesus showed the disciples how to lead and they took that into the new Church. Paul wrote out what a leader should like in 2 Timothy 3. The list holds qualifications for leaders but what are leaders if they don’t have people following them? And what does it matter what the leader is like? It matters because we are to follow the example of the leaders.
Why should we care what is on the list of qualifications? Well, for a few reasons. One is that we need to know what kind of person to follow, one who is devoted to God and living as He calls us to live. Secondly if we are going to follow them, knowing what is on the list helps us know the direction we are going. And last but not least we need to know what is required of us when it is our time to lead.
A big thing we need to remember is that we are to be growing in our faith and our lives are benefited with help from others. We were created to do life together in a community and one of the reasons is that it helps us grow. We need to want to grow. We should never stop learning.
Making It Personal
What do you look for in a leader? What do you think about being a leader yourself? Have you ever taken a close look at those you follow for spiritual guidance?
Making It Personal Kids
How about a game? Play Follow the Leader and take turns being the leader. Are some people harder to follow than others?
Father, thank You for being our ultimate leader. Please give us godly examples to follow so we can be more like You. In Jesus’ name, amen.