It was near the end of our pre-marital counseling sessions and we were pretty sure we were ready to take on the world. I mean, we had Jesus, each other, and the cutest matching placemats and plastic napkin ring holders (sporting true 90’s fashion) that you ever did see. Heh. I’m sure we should have felt the weight of this monumental undertaking more than we did, but we were young, naive, and mostly too busy gleefully skipping our way to the altar hand-in-hand to notice that we were slightly distracted by the fanfare of it all.
As part of our final preparation before our wedding day, our pastor hand-selected a couple representing leadership in our church and assigned us the task of visiting their home and interviewing this seasoned husband and his wife. What we originally looked at as a formal counseling requirement ended up being a life-changing model for our marriage.
From the second we entered their home, we could see why our pastor had chosen this well known, respected family. Immediately we could feel the warmth of their home that overflowed with so much love and life. After they introduced us to their five children (and the aging family member for whom they’d built-on an entire extra room), we were welcomed to their table where we would hang on their every word over a warm pot of stew. Their conversation was natural yet intentional, covering the full spectrum of hilarious marriage moments to their deepest trials. They shared how they grew in love and learned to respect each other’s unique roles and gifts; how they constantly ran to God and His Word together to find wisdom in managing everything from their money to their tempers. We listened to their sincere and humble prayers, their gentle instruction to their children, and their honoring words for one another. We heard how they forgave each other, we watched how they served each other, and we took note of all the ways they incorporated Jesus into every aspect of their lives.
And we walked out of that house different people, knowing that we had been led to God.
Time spent with this one church leader and his wife in their home revealed the real-deal gospel at work in their lives – something that they had become solidly known for over the years. It’s no wonder Paul takes great care to instruct Timothy that a church overseer must know how to manage his own home. “If a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?” (1 Timothy 3:5).
Leadership matters, because leadership models. Paul knows that there’s no way a church leader can effectively lead a congregation to God, to holy living, and to reaching the lost for Christ if he is not proven in leading with excellence in his very own home. God’s Word requires that church overseers are “above reproach” – not perfect – but solid in essential character traits that shine first in the most intimate, personal spaces. On the other hand, leaders who live in hypocrisy to the standards outlined in 1 Timothy 3 can quickly compromise the trust and spiritual growth of individual members, as well as the reputation and credibility of the church as a whole. Leadership matters in light of the gospel.
Would you pray and thank God for your church leaders today, and then commit to regularly praying for them as they seek to lead you to God? Let’s also commit to constantly growing in personal godliness, so that we too can impact lives around us by the way we use our God-given gifts and model real, consistent gospel-centered living.
At His feet,
GET EXCITED… Natalie Grant & Love God Greatly are teaming up for one VERY special night of praise and worship on September 22 at Lake Pointe Church in Rockwall, Texas!! Trust us when we say that you won’t want to miss this power-packed ministry night! And get this: for each ticket purchased, concert goers will receive a FREE Love God Greatly Bible study journal! How amazing is that?!
*A special invitation to GIVE BACK: For those in our LGG community who are not within traveling distance or simply can’t make it to the concert, would you consider GIFTING a concert ticket to a very worthy cause? We’re giving YOU the opportunity to purchase concert tickets for our amazing friends at a local women’s and children’s services ministry here in Rockwall. Your donated ticket(s) will give one (or more!) of these precious women a unique worship experience, plus their very own LGG study journal to take home with them! What a sweet way to still be able to participate in this exciting night AND get more women around the world in God’s Word. THANK YOU for helping us reach and dream BIG in order to make Him known!
You can find our women’s and corresponding kids’ journals here: