Discipleship – Yoda style

Now where is that parent that's been bad-mouthing you?

Obi-Wan Moder

I had a rare weekend. I was one of dozens of speakers at a conference in the Seattle area, and was able to be with both men who have influenced my youth ministry journey more than any other. Monty took me under his wing when I was a rookie in my first youth ministry tour. I was 20 and had just taken my first youth pastor job. He was the youth pastor at the big church across town and took me under his wing immediately. He not only helped me early on, but over the years has helped me survive some difficult youth ministry seasons. Monty helped me develop in my leadership capacity as a young leader, and challenges me still today as an example of a guy who NEVER mails it in. He still brings it every time. The other main mentor in my world is Bo. He has been coaching me through Lead222 over much of the last 10 yrs. He brings a football coaches mentality to our relationship. He lives out the verse in 2 Timothy 4:2 that tells us to “correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.” When I am with Bo, I feel like he grabs me by the face mask and tells me the hard stuff I need to hear. And I listen.

Bo and Monty shared the stage for a few moments to answer questions about longevity in youth ministry during the conference. And as I sat in the audience, I couldn’t help but think of what a privilege to have, not one, but both of them in my life. What kind of leader would I be today had they not taken the time to invest in me? Would I even be a leader today? Maybe, but then again maybe not. I definitely would be much lesser of a leader without their influence in my life.

It’s for this reason that I continue to invest in young leaders. I hope that I can pay it forward to help other leaders survive the difficult seasons of life. And that they in turn will invest in others, thereby continuing the legacy of investment in others over the years. It’s the charge of one of my life verses: 2 Tim 2:2. “And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.” This is discipleship. It’s exactly what Bo and Monty have done for me. Who do you have in your life that’s investing in you? Who are you investing in?

%d bloggers like this: