Leadership Factors


                                    Rev. Grayson Jones



If we want amazing grace in our lives, says Grayson Jones, we need to open our eyes to what God is showing us


In Luke 18: 15-42 we read the story of the healing of the blind man. This is probably the same blind man mentioned in Mark 10:46-52 where we know the man as Bartimaeus. Here we can see some great truths about the power of vision and What to do to get renewed vision from God.


Without a vision we end up begging (v35): We read that Bartimaeus, due to his blindness, was a beggar. Every day he would sit down at the side of the road and beg people to give him a hand- out as he couldn’t see to do anything for himself He couldn’t even decide where he was going, but had to rely on simply following others. lf we fail to get a vision for our lives, ministries and churches, we end up being led by the latest fad, or the newest Christian trend.


Without a vision we have to rely on just following the crowd – v36. Due to his lack of vision Bartimaeus had to rely on others telling him what was going on. He could only sit at the roadside and listen, but was unable to see what others saw.


Vision allows us to see what to do and where to go; without it, we simply have to follow the crowd. Far too many Christians and churches are just following the crowd hoping it will lead them into the blessing and favour of God. Visions allow us to lead the way rather than simply follow the crowd.


Without a vision things pass us by – 37: As Bartimaeus sat by the roadside, Jesus passed by, but he couldn’t see him. When we have no vision, we can often miss the most important opportunities as we simply just don’t see them.


How many Christians, churches and ministries have allowed incredible God opportunities to pass by, simply due to not having any vision to see them? Often, people without vision complain about how easy it is for others who have great people or great leaders. Yet the truth is 17 that often they are there, but they miss them, they just pass them by.


We need to cry out to Jesus for mercy – v38: Even though Bartimaeus had no vision he was no fool, because he realised he needed to see and where to look for his sight. So he cried out to Jesus for mercy.

lf we have no vision we don’t need another conference, we don’t need to read the latest book; instead, we simply need to cry out to Jesus for God to open our blind eyes.


There will be opposition to overcome – v39: On hearing him shout out, those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet. Yet he shouted all the louder. Ben we begin to ask God for vision there will be things that will oppose us. Getting vision from God takes time, perseverance and tenacity of spirit to keep on asking and ignoring the opposition we receive.


We have to let go of what we have – Mark 10:50: On hearing Jesus calling him, Bartimaeus threw his cloak aside. The cloak identified him as a blind man and a beggar. In throwing it aside, he shows his faith, that from that moment, things were going to be different. He was leaving what he was, so that he could embrace something new.


As leaders, if we want vision from Jesus we have to be willing to let go of what we see and how we do things so he can open our eyes to what he wants us to see. Are you willing to let go of the things that define you so that God can open your eyes to new ideas and opportunities?


We must ask Jesus for vision – v40: It seems strange that Jesus asks a blind man, what do you want me to do for young – but he does. The reason is that Jesus wants to know exactly what we want him to do for us. lf we need vision, then we need to be specific and ask him to give us his vision for our lives, so we can see what we can’t yet see.


We have to receive it by faith – v42: As he confessed his need to Jesus, he was told ‘receive your sight’. In confessing his need and connecting with Jesus he received vision. God is more willing to give us vision, but we have to receive it by faith.


We have to believe that what we are now seeing and thinking is of God and be willing to act on it. Many leaders ask and pray for vision, but then fail to act in faith, constantly doubting what they see.


When people see we have new vision they will glorify God – v43: When all the people saw Bartimaeus had his vision restored and was able to see, they all began to praise God. When people in our churches see their leaders full of vision and able to follow Jesus they will get excited and praise God.


It’s time that leaders stopped blaming their followers for their lack of excitement and willingness to serve God and got a vision for their churches – then the people will be everything they need and will glorify God.




Contemporary Considerations


                                         Rev. E. Anderson

by Rick Warren

“I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds” – John 12:24 (NIV)

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When you think about your walk with Jesus, some days you may wonder, “Why is this so hard? I’m still struggling with so many problems. When will I finally get it right?”

In my journey as a pastor, I’ve learned that spiritual growth is often like the growth we see in nature – the best fruit ripens slowly. In John 12:24, Jesus says, “I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds” (NIV).

The problem is we tend to get impatient, so we dig up the seed to check the progress of its growth, and that slows down our growth! If you’re not seeing as much fruit as you’d like, don’t despair. Growth takes time.

In the meantime, try these steps for spiritual growth:

  • Nurture growth with God’s Word. I know you’re already doing this, but when you read the promises of God, again and again, it helps you remember that he is at work, even when you can’t see him at work: “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” – Hebrews 11:1 NIV.
  • Cooperate with God as he prunes. Praise God for the work he’s doing in your life, remembering “he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more” – John 15:2 NLT.
  • Pray through the “fruit list. Pray through the “fruit list” (the fruit of the Spirit) from Galatians 5:22-23. The NIV Bible lists the fruit as love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Ask God to help you grow this fruit in your life.



Christian Testimony


                                            Rory Fallon



RORY Fallon knows he wasn’t everybody’s cup of tea when he made the move to Plymouth Argyle under departed boss Ian Holloway.


And he’s not sure how long he’ll remain at the club beyond the one year he has left on contract.


But whether he stays or goes, he remains unworried because he knows that he answers to a much higher authority than the club officials and boss Paul Sturrock.


The much travelled 25-year-old striker counts Barnsley, Yeovil, Swindon, Shrewsbury and Swansea among his former clubs, and admits; he hasn’t always done himself justice.


But he’s been in great form since the end of last season. He finished the Argyle campaign with a flourish, scoring four goals in seven games, and regularly being voted man of the match.


And he declares that it’s a born-again experience that has put him straight – faith in God overcomes all things.


He said: “I play for the glory of God. That’s it! He has given me a new life, and I think it’s reflecting in my football.


“I am so in love with Jesus, and just want to glorify him on and off the pitch – he is at the centre of my life and there’s so much I want to do for Him.


“As a younger man I did all the things that most young footballers do. I wasn’t focused, and was getting into all the wrong things.




“But I had an experience of God, became – to quote scripture – born again, and it’s made the most incredible difference to my life.”


Rory even turned away from extra-marital sex with his long-term girl friend with whom he was living at the time of his born-again experience.


He explained: “We were living together and having the usual relationship in that area, but when I learned what the Word of God said about such, arrangements were stopped.


“Instead, we got married as scripture tells us and in the meantime refrained from sexual activity.


“That’s how I want to live my life in all areas. I want to be the man that God called me to be, and all our instructions for that can be found in the bible. Scripture tells me that God has a plan for my life and that’s the only thing I want in my life.”


The same is true of his footballing life, which is why he was never worried as the weeks passed without Argyle making a new contract offer to him.


He said: “It’s all in god’s hands, and it’s a tremendous relief not to have to worry about such things.”