Someone asked me recently “what has made the most significant impact on your faith journey?” I thought about this question for a moment, and decided it wasn’t “what” but “who.”
When I reflect on my faith journey, there are a number of key elements; Hearing God’s Word from the Scriptures, belonging to a faith community and experiencing God, are all factors that have played a huge part in my story. However, the most significant ingredients in my faith journey have been the people who have looked out for me, discipled me, prayed for me and guided me.
Recently, I had a chat with one of the students in our youth ministry. He had been doing it pretty tough, and as we chatted I realised how alone this young man was. He enjoyed being part of our youth ministry – having fun with his peers, hanging out with leaders and learning more about God – but what he really needed was someone who could sit down with him one-on-one, and just walk the journey with him.
As I read the Gospels, I am struck by how Jesus cared for the ‘ones.’ His heart for the individual is clear in the Parables of the Lost Sheep, Coin, and Son. Throughout his ministry, Jesus’ care for the ‘ones’ is demonstrated when he pauses for a woman who reached out in faith for healing from the crowd, when he eats a meal at the house of a tax collector who had climbed a tree to see him, and when he equips his closest disciples to lead the church after he leaves.
Walking with the ‘ones’ can be incredibly difficult. Getting involved in the details of others’ lives can at times be messy, distressing and sad. However, the joys of seeing people take steps of faith, discover something new and bloom in their own personal journeys with God are priceless.
The younger generation are looking for people that they can look up to. For people they can walk the journey with. They may not directly ask for help, but many would appreciate someone taking an interest in their lives and mentoring them, discipling them, and share life with them.
Who’s faith journey will you make a significant impact on?
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