Passing the baton to others is easier to talk about than to do. Fears prevent us from trusting our disciples and handing over true authority to them. Without the passing on of both authority and tasks, we will not be able to multiply disciples.
This week I had the privilege of training together with an African movement leader who has seen many generations of disciples. We learned much from this man of God. Below is an excerpt from one of his sessions.
“To Timothy, you therefore my son be strong in the grace that is in Christ. So firstly is to be strong, OK? And the second thing he said, the things which you have heard from me, in the presence of many witnesses, entrust this to faithful men. Give this to the faithful men who will be able to teach others also. Now Timothy is getting instruction from Paul, which is like Paul spending much time with Timothy. He is discipling Timothy in whatever he has seen Paul doing.
“Timothy also should do that, and he must also find the faithful men, who can also do the same job, which Timothy has been doing. So this is, I think, something very important for us as the missionaries when we are scattering seeds.
Start Looking for a Successor
“When we see the seeds are germinating, we need to start looking also for the people who can succeed us, the people who can do better.
“You know, in Africa, sometimes it’s so difficult to find people to do this. It is difficult to find somebody who can do things which you have been doing even the successor. I found it difficult to find somebody who can succeed even in the presidency. The president is not even discipling somebody to take over. But we as a missionary, we need to learn to pass on what we have learned, what we know. And we don’t need to hide anything.
“We need to give whatever we know. So this is very important. We have seen Paul here. He is the leader saying like, oh, you have seen me. Be open. You have seen me and we have been together, you have seen me while I have been developing you. You have seen me, and you have been sitting with me, do the same to others.
“You know, we need to learn to pass on what we know. I know it’s not easy, more especially in Africa. You’ll find a person is just holding the position. He don’t want to give up to somebody who can do the same job, you know, because to us Africans, I think title is more important than developing somebody. So I want to encourage all of us.
Train and Don’t Hide
“That we need to learn to disciple others. Train them. Don’t hide anything from them. Then also they can do a better job than ourselves. You know, the aim of discipleship is to disciple somebody to become better than yourself. You remember, Jesus said that you will do more than what I did. So he trusted his disciples that they can do better. He told them I’m leaving. But I know I have given whatever. You know scattering the seeds I scattered with you.
“You have seen the way I’ve been scattering seeds. But I spent much time with you, my disciples. He had 12 disciples to which He spent much of His time. We as also the missionaries. My encouragement is we need to scatter seeds to everyone.
Leave a Legacy
“But if you want to develop, to leave the legacy, to see our work continue, we need to spend time with people. So like here for Paul is telling Timothy. And Timothy, you need also to find some people whom we can trust faithful people. And, you know, to find faithful people, it takes the Holy Spirit. Another one was already said. We need to pray, we need to spend much time with them.
“And we really need to stand firm and give the truth to our disciples. You know, many, many people don’t want to tell them how we are living, how we raise up our support, how we are trusting God for things. I have learned so much from my people has been discipling me. I remember Chris was spending much time with me in the, and I, can see what he was doing. He was a missionary from another country. He came and was just discipling us. The way he was living. You can see something. He can sleep everywhere! As a Westerner, I can see he did not hide anything from myself. So us also as the missionaries, we don’t need to hide anything from others.
Are you passing on what you have learned to others? Or holding on to it? Do you hide anything from your trainees or live an open life with them?
What stands out to you from this movement leader’s words?
Share in the comments below or on the Disciple Making Movements Facebook group.
*Note: The above picture is not the movement leader’s photo.
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