When Courageous Leaders Open Up in Humility
It is often said, “Wounded people wound others.” The opposite is also true! Healed people heal others. Transformation and healing can be contagious!
Recently, a YWAM Frontier Missions leader shared a special story. God has powerfully worked among the YWAM-FM leaders in her region. God is taking them to a deeper place of humility, unity and reconciliation so they can see greater fruit.
Like Father and Son
Many years ago, a YWAM leader began discipling a young believer. They spent a lot of time together and became close. Before long, they began to interact with each other as a spiritual father and son. Their connection was impressive and close. The leader invested a lot into this young disciple’s life year after year. The disciple served and showed great loyalty to this leader as well.
The spiritual investment the senior leader made was obvious. The young man quickly grew and matured in the things of the Lord. He became an influential leader and effective church planter. The spiritual father loved him deeply. He was proud of him and poured his life the young man and his wife. Doors of ministry and opportunity were opened for him.
Then a shocking and unexpected thing happened. Deep misunderstanding crept into the relationship. A serious and painful rift in the relationship developed.
Internal problems – Outward closeness
In spite of their conflict, the two men demonstrated an impressive outward relationship. In the eyes of others, they were still friendly and acted as if everything was fine. But it was not.
Few people knew of the growing problems between them. Even close friends didn’t recognize the relationship was becoming more and more troubled.
Confession and Openness
A few months ago, training was planned for the church planters in their area. In the training, the speaker began to talk about the importance of honest and open relationships with one another. He knew nothing of this broken relationship. He spoke of God’s desire to heal troubled relationships. Both men were present and involved in the teaching.
Unexpectedly, the two men decided to share their story with everyone there. This was not part of the speaker’s plan, but it was definitely God’s plan!
This spiritual father and son shared transparently about their years of conflict. A hushed silence fell on the room. The two men sharing had no idea of the impact of their honest confessions before the group. They courageously shared their hearts without an agenda or sure outcome.
As they spoke, another leader stepped in. He drew attention to their confession and the change that had begun. When he did this, others in the group also began to confess the effect of this broken relationship on them. Walls of pretense fell away.
The speaker asked them if they were open to reconciling with each other. Would they forgive one another for the hurts they had experienced?
Their response was incredible! The two men declared their love and commitment to one another. With obvious emotion, they each declared their longing for the open and close relationship they once enjoyed.
Humility and tears flowed. The spiritual father and son shamelessly and freely extended forgiveness. It was an unforgettable demonstration of the power of God to restore. God’s love was felt by each person as the presence of God filled the room.
Personal confessions poured out. Hidden fears of being open and real with each other were shared. The humility of these two respected leaders allowed others to follow their bold example.
Transformation Starts With Us
Disciple-Making Movements (DMMs) must be transformational. We want to start “Kingdom” movements. We as leaders and disciples of Jesus must press in to be transformed and healed ourselves. Where there is brokenness, we must pursue healing.
When we have broken relationships in our churches, movements or YWAM teams, can God use us as greatly as He desires? Or is it possible that our unhealthy relationships limit God’s ability to flow through us?
Broken relationships leave room for the enemy to attack, divide, discourage and distract us. We can not afford to give the devil that kind of advantage against us.
In our longing to reach the unreached and start transformational movements among them, let’s remember that it starts with us. Maybe your humility and example will cause others to follow as these leader’s courageous actions did. It could even result in the release of God’s presence and power that leads toward a miraculous movement.