I’m Still 11

Ben —  April 15, 2011 — 14 Comments

Listening to a sermon targeted towards middle school students, and getting something out of it as a 33-year-old male, well… that can mean 1 or 2 things:

  1. The message was completely spot on and relevant for middle schoolers, and I really try to put myself in a 10-13 year olds shoes so as to relate with what they’re dealing with in their every day lives.
  2. I’ve not matured past 11 years old, so any and all messages in that environment are going to be relevant to me in the present day.

I honestly don’t mind you believing either of these, because sometimes I’m not entirely sure I’ve matured past 11 either.

One of the messages a couple of weeks ago had to do with being a good steward with what has been given to us.

What has been entrusted to us.

They talked about the Parable of the Bags of Gold, and I thought about how it can be challenging because it is easy to forget to be a good steward when things (material things) can sometimes blind us from being the disciple we are called to be.

Wait, huh? Disciple?

Donald over at Project: Mathetes asked a very important question over the week to a few of us, and that was this:

“What does being a disciple of Christ really mean to you?”

I had to really think about it, because I don’t think I have ever been asked this question before, especially not in my adult-life. Honest. So without trying to spew a bunch of bible verses and sound automatic and inauthentic, I wanted to go with what I believed to be true based on what I was taught, what I remembered, “shooting from the hip” so as to say. I know it can be dangerous, and my theology could have been way off but I was confident in my answer.

Being a disciple of Christ means that I have a personal, growing relationship with Jesus Christ, assured of my salvation through God’s ultimate sacrifice. It means that I need to live a life of Faith, trusting God and His unconditional love and that I, in turn, love the Lord with all my heart, mind and soul. It means that I am continually in His word, and that my “calling” is to go forth and make disciples so they, will also be lead into a personal, growing relationship with Jesus Christ.

Yet after clicking “send,” I felt as though I am still a baby Christian, still somewhat leaning on my parents faith and barely exploring to go on my own, and with that thought…oh boy.

I have been entrusted with the lives of about 20 6th grade boys, playing a key role in shaping the spiritual and social bonds of these students. I HAVE to get it right. Right?

Now I know Rick Warren was not the first to quote this, he is the most recent person I’ve seen who’s tweeted this, and it has stuck out in my head, especially since I have been placed in this position:

Husband / Father / Friend / Small Group Leader

So what am I doing to ensure that I am being a good steward with all that I have been given?

My Talents

My Gifts

My Money

My Wife

My. Children.

Before worrying about getting it right with the students, I have to be sure I am feeding myself with The Word so as to lead my household in the right direction, and THAT… is truth, but what happens when I fail to lead the household as the man of God? What happens when I fail to be a good steward?

I know I’m not alone in asking those questions, and that’s what we’re all here for.

Here’s an open call to everybody who cares about what I’m sayin’, who wants to be a part of something great. The following are a few (modified) questions that we were asked to ask our students:

Is there anyone whom you feel God has placed in your life for a specific reason, but you feel as though you could be doing a better job of being a good steward with the Truth He has placed on your heart?
Are they a friend? Husband? Wife? Children? Neighbor? Coworker?
For the sake of specificity, who is it?

I plan on spending time in prayer for every single person who comments with answers, and in return I ask that you choose one other commenter, as well as pray for me and that I continue to lead my wife, my children, and my students with truth and understanding, in faith and love, and with Jesus Christ as the center of all.

14 responses to I’m Still 11

  1. Friends. Bloggers. Others. People all the time.

  2. I love your definition of disciple and might have to borrow it. 🙂

  3. Heck yeah. My wife, who is a spiritual giant next to me. My coworkers. My neighbor family a few houses up. Constant reader at the Blogging. And such as.

  4. My wife, my daughter, my co-workers, my blog readers.


  5. This is why I dig you Ben (dig sounds so gay… sorry). You are 11 but you have the ability to spew out some deep spiritual truths. #win.

    My first disciples are my children. I want them to know Jesus, understand grace and come to know Him more each day.

    My job. I work with lawyers (I’m sure there is some story out there that lawyers = devils). Not too “FAR” from the truth. I want to be that light at the work place.

    My brother. He lives in New Jersey. I see him about 1 day a month (maybe). I want God to save him so bad. I want to lead him to Christ.

    Thanks Ben. This is good stuff to chew on for a long time.

  6. Solid. I’ve been wrestling with that question since Donald asked it. It’s frustrating how “Americanized” my faith is. Even though it’s changed greatly over the past 2 years, it’s still so weak.

    Great stuff.

    • Kevin…I’ve often wondered to myself whether certain things I believe about God are shared by people in say, Papua New Guinea. I think its hard to keep culture from influence our view of the Truth. But, what’s amazing about Him is that He transcends culture, time and space.

  7. I need spend more time with a few specific friends. I have let work and my upcoming wedding (tomorrow!) to get in the way of some of my relationship. My friends have been really great but I feel that some of the things I was building with a few people have taken several steps back.

    Thank you for this post, Ben. It has hit my hard this morning and has me asking some big question.

    What should my life look like when I get back from the honeymoon? I know it will be similar to the one I love now, but what specifically do I need to lose so I can gain more of Christ?

  8. My wife and children are my first priority. I want to live a life of discipleship that they can see and confidently say that “Daddy/Husband loved Jesus.”

    Aside from them, coworkers and blog-buddies – two sets of friends who I want to be more intentional with.

  9. I KNOW there are two very specific people God has placed in my life as a relationship in which I am tested to live out my faith by depending on His strength. If I try to go it alone, and “be nice”, it comes out all wrong and ends up in conflict. But, if I pray for Him to guide my thoughts, words, and actions when I’m around these people, something amazing happens-the conflict dissipates and He is shown mighty.

    • p.s. 11 was a good year for me. I say there’s nothing wrong with reverting to that point in life from time to time, as long you remember to use your deodorant (why do kids that age always forget!?!?).

  10. I think you are halfway between #1 & #2 most definitely, forever young and seeing life the way God truly wants us to see it! Your wife, kids, coworkers, kids at church, friends – extended family it can all seem overwhelming to think of them as a field for discipleship. You are on track with all you have shared and we are all challenged and blessed by it. I have 1 at work I disciple currently and 2 I am praying God will open the door for this to happen. I see His handiwork in the preparations for it already and love Him for it.

  11. Is there anyone whom you feel God has placed in your life for a specific reason, but you feel as though you could be doing a better job of being a good steward with the Truth He has placed on your heart?

    Dude. Are you kidding? Where do I start? 🙂

    However, to answer, I would say my bride. She is my first priority, apart from Jesus of course, this side of Heaven. Covenant, buddy. That’s covenant all the way right there.

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