Spiritual Life of the Leader - Lesson 18

Christian Anthropology (Part 2/2)

It's important to keep Christ at the center of who you are. Interiority includes memory, intellect, will. Augustine says will is most important.In addition to our personal thoughts, we exist in community with others who are submitting their lives to the will of Christ. The Lord has placed us in a certain place and time and wants you to live a life of obedience in that context every day, not just one day a week. The Father is seeking to form your life into the image of Christ as you were meant to be. Through our experiences, God forms you into a unique person. On the relational side, this results in compassion for others because we love others with the same love we experienced. God gives us confidence that he has given us the gifts and resources we need to live out the calling he has given us. Competence that our ministry will be effective. Our courage comes from trusting in the strength of the Lord. Community, the work of God’s Church is a work done with others. Confirmation comes internally from God and externally from the community of faith. 

Stephen Martyn
Spiritual Life of the Leader
Lesson 18
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Christian Anthropology (Part 2/2)

Christian Anthropology (Part 2)

I. Field Theory

A. Mystery of God as revealed through Christ

B. Your interior life

C. Your relational life

D. Your here and now life

E. You are a global citizen

II. Implications of the Field Theory in Your Daily Life

A. At the center is the mystery of the Trinity

B. Congenial

C. Compassion

D. Confidence

E. Competence

F. Courage

G. Community

H. Cooperation

I. Confirmation

J. Tension between firmness and gentleness

III. Conclusion

A. How do you keep a balance between working on internal issues and community issues?

B. Cooperation with the Spirit as well as cooperation with others

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Class Resources
  • Dr. Martyn has surveyed church leaders around the world to understand their responsibilities and pressures. He aims to use his experience to help them develop a model of ministry that encourages spiritual formation, discipleship, and worship in a healthy way. His class is comprehensive on topics such as spiritual formation, discipleship, leadership principles, and worship. Listening to this class could benefit anyone regardless of whether they have an official leadership position or not.
  • Christian activism is Christians seeking to be involved in the issues and needs of the day and time. Wesleyans in the 1700's in England sought to minister to people that others didn’t care about. To be called by Christ is to be called into the body of Christ. A biblical model is that every member is a full-fledged minister of the gospel without distinction between clergy and laity. 

  • Mysticism can be described as the direct communication of your spirit with the Divine Spirit as taught and illustrated in the New Testament as a fundamental part of Christian belief. Receptivity means that I am open to what the Lord is saying to me through the revelation of his word, the magnificence of his son and the voice of his Spirit which is consistent with the written word. The church was emphasizing what they were doing for God rather than on first listening to what God wants us to be and then acting. Union with our Lord must come before any type of donation or work (kenosis) for our Lord. (Download the complete text of the sermon by clicking on the link on this page or under the Downloads heading on the class page.)

  • Which do you love more, the Lord or the projects you are doing for him? Is your goal to exalt the Lord or build a personal kingdom? Essence of anxiety is whether or not you can trust God. The question to ask when you begin having feelings of self-pity is, “Is you life going to be defined by how you think it ought to go?”  The blame-shame mindset is that you are unhappy because there is something wrong with the people around you. When you experience these red flags in your ministry, you should recognize it as time that it’s possible that the Lord may be prompting you to make a change in your life.The Mary in you must rest at the feet of Jesus if the Martha in you is to do her work.

  • Essence is who the Lord has created you to be. Biblically, essence precedes existence as oppose to Sartre's teaching that man is no more than what he makes of himself. God has given us the capacity of reception, to be able to hear God’s voice and follow it. The spiritual life that God calls you to live is based on what you receive from God, not on what you do for God.

  • How do you determine if your motives are right in your efforts to serve God? The more gifts and talents we have, the more susceptible we are to self-deception regarding our motives. Resist the urge to make pleasing people your primary motivation. You will never please everyone and in the process you lose sight of focusing on pleasing God. When people have expectations of you that don’t match what God has called you to do, there are times when you must, “let Lazarus die.”

  • God wants us to be faithful to the kingdom and his son and fruitful according to his metrics. What’s the goal and what condition do our hearts need to be in to understand the goal? The Mary in us needs to rest at the feet of Jesus in order for the Martha in us to do her work. Think about when you experienced renewal and think about when you were blessed. When you have received God’s blessing, how has that resulted in demonstrating his hand of mercy to someone else? How are your activities balanced?

  • A canal simultaneously pours out what it receives. A reservoir waits till it’s filled then discharges water without loss to itself. Today, there are many in God’s church that act like canals. The reservoirs are far too rare. So urgent is the charity of those through whom heavenly doctrine flows that they want to pour it forth to us before they have been filled. They are more ready to speak than to listen, impatient to teach what they have not grasped, and full of presumption to govern others while they know not how to govern themselves. High mountain lakes have one stream out and water level relatively constant throughout the year. How is the water level staying constant in your life? Depletion results in erosion of presence, and results in just going through the motions. 

  • The Lord desires that we live dispositionally. Important elements include loving God, living devotionally, relational strengthening, vocational serving (listening with the intent of following what I hear). Dallas Willard wrote, “If I am a disciple of Jesus, I am with him to learn from him, how to be like him." The primary calling of a pastor is to follow Jesus, within the calling of leading a church. 

  • The eight deadly sins are in the order that Satan uses to try to get us and in the order in which we need redemption. Gormandize means you are overdoing it and being a slave to flesh. Fornication refers to a wandering heart and seeking to devour others. Avarice is the love of money and sometimes is a fear of not having enough. Anger is a rancorous spirit. The spiritual cancer of depreciation is looking at the vast horizon of God’s goodness in his creation and my life and depreciating it, only seeing what’s wrong. Psalm 51:10-12, create in me a clean heart, O God and renew a right spirit within me.

  • When you experience a difficult situation, how do you begin to turn your focus away from the negative and on to what God is doing? How do you respond when you are working closely with people that don't like you? What do you do as a leader when there is a person that is angry with you and disagrees with how you are leading?

  • The sin of acedia is, “I don’t care anymore.” The sin of tristitia is sadness, wrongly processing suffering and loss, allowing the soul to close in on itself and refuse instruction from God. Tristitia is neither a result of other people or of our outward circumstances. Satan wants to get us off the track in stupid presumption or in sinful carelessnenss. God redeems the hurt that evil has done.

  • In the early church passion was seen as something that controlled you and out of control and leading you astray, not a positive motivation. John Cassion described vainglory as passion to take pleasure in our own qualities. The danger is that we take credit for what God is doing. In pursuit of being popular, we often sacrifice who we are at the core. Pride is the original vice from which all others spring. Pride can develop into functioning atheism. The cure for pride is to have the humility of Jesus in our heart. 

  • Is there a sin that's not deadly? To what extent can you worry about something before it becomes a sin? What does it take to overcome gluttony? The minute you make an exception for yourself, you either presume on the grace of God or break a known law of God. Admit what you are feeling and submit it to God to have faith in him in the situation, then do your part.

  • Instead of gluttony, we see temperance. Temperance means living a balanced life. Chaste love is extending love to others, not preying on them. Poverty of spirit rather than greed. Cultivate meekness to deal with anger. You have been forgiven much so you should be willing to forgive others much. Cultivate faith, hope and love to deal with hopelessness. Cultivate humility to deal with vainglory. Evangelism in the first 300 years a result of the quality of the lives of disciples as they lived in a hostile environment. 

  • A transcendent crisis is yearning for the “more than.” “Is life meaningful?” “Is God good?” Can I trust my life to God or have I been abandoned by God? An idolatry crisis happens when you run after a passion rather than pursue God. Each person in your sphere of influence is going through crises in their own lives. God can use a crisis to help something in us die so we can experience and share the light of Christ.

  • To feed the 5,000, the disciples had to rely on Jesus because they didn’t have the resources. Jesus walked out on the water to comfort the disciples with his presence. The disciples thought they were going to die a terrible death. If you choose to think your situation, the church and others are hopeless, it results in ego desperation, or hopelessness. You see what’s wrong, you think you have exhausted your resources and you see no way that it’s going to get fixed. If you allow the crisis to take you into the life of Christ and dependence on him, it will not destroy you. 

  • It's important for us to understand how our relationship with God is affected by being born at a certain period of time and in a certain society. The vital is the physical dimension of the human life. Vitalism is where your physical pleasures become the priority in your life.  Functional is the roles, tasks and responsibilities we take on. It’s a problem when we allow our roles and responsibilities to define us, which is functionalism. Transcendent is the longing for the “more than.” Pneumatic/Ecclesial level is the capacity the Lord has given each of us to hear and respond to the Holy Spirit, God’s voice. When ambition gets separated from the leading of the Spirit, it can become self-promotion. Functional Transcendence is you using the things of God for self-gain.

  • It's important to keep Christ at the center of who you are. Interiority includes memory, intellect, will. Augustine says will is most important.In addition to our personal thoughts, we exist in community with others who are submitting their lives to the will of Christ. The Lord has placed us in a certain place and time and wants you to live a life of obedience in that context every day, not just one day a week. The Father is seeking to form your life into the image of Christ as you were meant to be. Through our experiences, God forms you into a unique person. On the relational side, this results in compassion for others because we love others with the same love we experienced. God gives us confidence that he has given us the gifts and resources we need to live out the calling he has given us. Competence that our ministry will be effective. Our courage comes from trusting in the strength of the Lord. Community, the work of God’s Church is a work done with others. Confirmation comes internally from God and externally from the community of faith. 

  • If you are following Jesus, you have a role as a leader. If a spiritual leader does not understand what their task is according to scripture, then their spiritual life is not going to have the focus the Lord wants them to have.  Worship is a response of the love that has been shown to us. Worship involves our all aspects of us and is enabled by God’s Spirit. We worship God because of who he is. By looking at Jesus, you see who God is.

  • The Church needs you to present what Scripture says, not your own ideas. Worship means to kneel before someone out of respect or honor. We owe it to God as an act of service to sit at his feet and worship him. Spiritual worship is to place our physical bodies at God’s disposal. Are we leading people to worship God, or just providing religious goods and services to them? Solid biblical teaching is important. Structure follows purpose. We are failing to dig down into the revelation of God and let the revelation of God set the compass. If you are not careful, your program sets your agenda.

  • Movements in worship: 1. kneeling in acts of loving worship. Kneeling in submission before God to acknowledge that you are dependent on him. 2. Exalting God by declaring his worthiness 3. Receiving God’s life symbolized by the sacrament of communion. 4. Empowers us and encourages us to go out and serve. We participate in the fellowship and life of the Trinity. We need to immerse ourselves in relationship to God and let that inform and empower what we do so that our worship service is more than creating an experience or transmitting information. Be explicit about your purpose in worship and include prayer.

  • The elders fall before the throne, they worship the Lord and they cast their crowns before him. Falling before the throne represents an acknowledging of God as absolute deity. What is going to happen in the future tells us what we should be doing now. When we fall down before the throne, our heart condition is inward humility and submission to the Lord. Then they raise up and exalt the Lord by proclaiming his worth. Inward love results in proclaiming what is right, good, just and holy. Taking of crowns is an outward expression of placing everything we have under the Lordship of Christ and an inward movement of total abandonment of everything we are to God.

  • The call of Jesus to, “follow me” is the call to redirect everything in our lives. A disciple is one who seeks to fulfill the will of the father by actively following Jesus the Son while continually depending on the Holy Spirit for guidance and strength. Faith is my trust in Jesus as well as the content of the Gospel. Practice is putting it into play. Catechism is the content of the faith, and catechesis is how you express it. Cheap grace is not biblical because it allows for justification without ensuing discipleship. Primary purposes of the church are to proclaim the Gospel, worship and make disciples. In addition to knowing the content, you must live it out. Clergy need to learn how to make and train disciples. Laity must be fully committed full-time ministers of the body of Christ.

  • Movements that are necessary for the church today to fulfill what God is calling them to do. For the clergy, 1. moving from pastor as the primary minister to each believer fulfilling their calling as full-time ministers in their spheres of influence; 2. Moving from preaching only to not only appropriate sermon preparation time but also discipling a core group; 3. Moving from a priority on numbers to staying with a process that results in mature disciples; 4. From solo leadership to team leadership. Discipleship should not be optional. Old Christendom model is breaking down but confusion on who and what we are called to be. “Is my first aim to make disciples, or do I just run an operation?” For the laity, 1. From going to church to being Church; 2. From expecting benefits from Christianity requiring no sustained effort to being intent on being disciples; 3. From being passive observers to full-time ministers. Primary purpose of leader is to equip the people of God to do the work of God.

  • The sermon is a critical part of the discipleship process. The “through” movement is the process of the “from-to” movement. Each of these steps must be contextualized to your situation. We are aiming for maturity in Christ. As a leader, you love the whole but you only disciple the few. Don’t neglect public proclamation but don’t see that as the end of your ministry. Daily pray, read scripture, weekly services, small groups acts of service, fasting, giving. Discipleship is helping people integrate the word of God into their lives.

  • Tozer says we don’t have the right of choosing Jesus as Savior and postponing our obedience. Dispositions are something that’s part of your daily life. Christian disciplines help us to love God and love our neighbor. Encourage people to seek God’s direction for where he wants them to serve. The biblical model is that mature Christians will live as disciplined followers. Make it a goal for pure love to fill your heart and govern your words and actions.

What do you think the priorities should be for a leader in the Church? How do you cultivate your personal spiritual life in a way that keeps you emotionally healthy and helps you avoid choosing sin? What is your measure of success for your church? How does that compare with a biblical measure of success? What is a disciple? What should the process of discipleship look like? What principles can you learn from the way Jesus interacted with his followers that will help you to encourage spiritual formation of the people in your sphere of influence? What are sins that people in leadership have commonly struggled with over the past 2,000 years? How do you recognize them in your own life and what are some practical ways to avoid them or repent and recover from them? What is the essence of worship? How do you live your life so you are worshipping God authentically in everything you do? How do you lead worship in a group setting in a way that encourages others to worship authentically? 

These are a few of the questions that Dr. Martyn poses to begin a conversation regarding the subject of the spiritual life of the leader. As a pastor for more than 20 years, Dr. Martyn asked and answered these questions in the context of loving and serving people personally. As part of his current position of teaching future pastors at Asbury seminary, he and some of his colleagues have conducted extensive surveys of church leaders throughout the North America and the world to get a better understanding of the responsibilities and pressures that church leaders face every day. His goal is to be able to understand biblical principles and use his experience to help leaders develop a model of ministry that helps them develop their personal spiritual life and give them a model to disciple and encourage the people they work with in a way that is healthy and encourages their faith and practice. 

Whether you have an official leadership position or not, you will benefit from listening to this class. It is one of the most comprehensive classes on spiritual formation, discipleship, leadership principles and worship that you will ever hear. If you listen and reflect on each of the lectures from beginning to end, you will be glad you did. 

Dr. Stephen Martyn

Spiritual Life of a Leader


Christian Anthropology (Part 2/2)

Lesson Transcript


[00:00:00] Okay. Welcome back. I wanna keep on with our exploration into Christian anthropology. I realize that this may be a new and strange area for you to venture into. I also realize that Adrian Von Comm is not the only person who felt like anthropology was important. Actually, Dallas Willard spent quite a bit of time and energy working on this. There are any number of others through church history who have worked on anthropology and and I'm not saying and neither did Adrian Walcott and say that his was the only view. I just found it to be very, very helpful in my own ministry and my own understanding. I mean, these things are like Matrix that I have in my own mind and in my own heart when I'm ministering to people, when I'm speaking, when I'm teaching. So what I want to do now is look at von coms field theory. Now, what in the world did he mean by his field theory? This was inspired, I think, by his own adventures into quantum physics and understanding that there's a whole field of energy in the physical universe. Now things spin around other things. Things that are connected that we think are not connected. Please, I'm not talking in a spiritual, mystic standpoint here at all. The tests that I'm talking about are actual quantum physics. So let's look at how he helped many people, myself included, to keep Christ at the center of who I am and to connect all things back into this amazing focus in this May amazing reality of the one who holds all things the whole world, the universe, all things are held together in him. Now, again, I want to point you to the text Understanding Our Story, which is a Christian anthropology by Rebecca Letterman and Susan Meto.


[00:02:38] And in this session I'm going to actually go to pages 14 and and and pass it where they put up the field model. So let's start out the way that they do by putting the center of this model in place so that all things are going to be held together by the center. Let me get their exact language here. So it is the divine forming and pre forming mystery. Again, don't make that anything mystical. It's just simply the revelation of Christ as revealed in in through the incarnation of Christ and the word that has been given to us. So let's just simply put the Cairo here at the middle. This is the mystery of God, as revealed through Christ, is going to be at the middle of this field where all things will come not only out from Christ, but will return to him. And we start out then with our interior life. And this is going to be a pole. There's going to be four poles here. But our interior life. Now, What do you mean by our interior life? You know, this is when you talk about interiority. You're talking about memory. You're talking about intellect. You're talking about will All of these things unfold at any moment in our interior in our interior life. They write the area of life where we receive and give form to our personal directives, thoughts, feelings, modes and decisions. So there's a whole, you know, sphere of the human life that is unfolding around our own thoughts, feelings, modes, directions, direct decisions. So Van com conceived of the human Heart, which she termed the core form as a relatively stable configuration of character dispositions. What in the world are they talking about? This is where all these different the disciplines are built up, the disposition to be kind and loving and thoughtful, the disposition to grow, the disposition to learn, the disposition to be loving and compassionate.


[00:05:45] You see what I'm doing. All of these things are are a part of the unique gift that you most deeply are. It's called the intra sphere or your own interiority. This probably the most important thing here, at least according to Augustine, is our will. It's the decision making process. So by orientation of will, you know, what we're talking about is an openness to that transcendent meaning of life that we were talking about in the last time. In other words, we're open to the invitations that are coming from the Holy Spirit to to form our lives in a certain way. All right. All of that is processed there. I think it'll it'll help you when you when you see get the let me get the whole picture up there for you so that you can see the the different spheres. Then, you know, there are some who would. And I actually just cut it off right here. And of course, we would call that a me and Jesus mentality. And it would be a very truncated, you know, kind of a tragically truncated view of our lives. There's also a major relational component of every human life. I mean, is anyone born in isolation? Does anybody live a singular life? Well, maybe a few, but most certainly that's not what the Lord designed. So over on this pole is what's called our relational. Life. My life is not merely caught up in my own thoughts and feelings. Sometimes feels like it, but I'm also part of a community. So just think about this. This would be family, friends, coworkers. This is going to be the fact that I live in a live in relationship of various levels of depth, but I live in relationship with a whole lot of people and even my life in relationship with others in the church.


[00:08:48] So this is this In end, the interrelatedness of life is huge. It's absolutely huge. Look, it's not just, you know, this vertical thing with me and God. There's always there's always a, you know, a horizon or part of who we are. Just think about this. It's the body of Christ as well. I am placed in the minute. I submit my life to the Lord Super Christ. That's the minute I am placed in communion with everyone else who submits their life to the Lordship of Christ. You know, historically, the church has called this the communion of the saints, and that communion is both with the saints in heaven as the triumphant saints as well as the saints on Earth. We're part of that same body as we submit our lives to the will of Christ. All right. Now, there's two other polls. There's also a really, really critical pole, which we tend to eliminate. And it is our here. And now. Life. I mean, this is where we are. This is where we put our place. This is the situation. Or people are here and now. Life. So what does this mean? This means that the Lord has has placed me in a certain time, in a certain situation, and He wants me to unfold a life of obedience to him in this certain place and certain time. If you're a student in school, then here's where he's called you to thrive. Here's where he's called you to be right there, right in that school, giving your best for the Lord, even as you stay in relationship with others. But here's where the work of your life is to unfold. And, of course, you know, of course, this this area will involve you just got to think in terms every day.


[00:11:33] That's the deal. So when Christianity is only thought about, only taught, only practiced on one day, you do not have true Christianity. This is our every hour here and lie here and now life. This is our every day life where we are unfolding, seeking to unfold in fidelity to how and where Christ has placed us. Well, you say, Well, that's enough. No. Let's get one more area. Let's fill in. He had one more pole where he wanted us to to understand the fact that we are global citizens. So this top pole is our global life, our global. I am not here just necessarily to serve one particular locale, although in practicality that's often how it works itself out. But even my service of love in one particular locale in the truest sense of the word, can and will have global implications. It's the world sphere. What is saying, what is what is pressing us in saying to us is, look, you're not called to live in isolation in insulation. And what you do here actually today, what you do here actually today may have impact on others halfway around the world. Again, just think in terms of the largeness of salvation. It's it's it's meant for all people and it's meant for us to see ourselves as having the potential of reflecting his love to all people globally. Now, let's work this thing out and let's get get let's just go down a little bit deeper in all of this and see how these things are meant to impact and work together. Now, I want to I want to peel this back and go back to go back into this a little bit more deeply and and following along the model and see, okay, what is this? What does this field theory mean for me, living an everyday life and seeking to live and obedient life that's connected with the Lord? Well, first of all, let's just look at the very center of all it is into the mystery of the Trinity.


[00:14:53] And and what do we have here at the very center of this? We have nothing less than adoration. And oh, where you see Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. Father loves the son, and the father pours his life out into the son. And the son responds to that love and the son and the son returns that love. And to the father and the bond between them is so incredibly strong. The bond between them is its own person. The kiss of peace between father and son is nothing other than the Holy Spirit. So the three in one this this is at the center of all that it is. And Father, Son and Holy Spirit are giving form to all that is. So when we talk about when Von Kahn would talk, this is what Von Karman meant when he talked about the divine forming mystery of God. The father is seeking to form your life into the image of Christ that you were meant to be. Just think about it now. Think about it. What if what if in the uniqueness that you are in, the uniqueness the two are created to be? And this is most certainly not the original thought to me, but what if when you get into heaven you are actually going to instruct the rest of the heavenly host about a particular aspect of the nature of God? So that's the body of Christ, the whole body together, each member of the body of Christ not absorbed in some washed out sea of nirvana. No. Each unique, each distinct, each recognizable, but each bearing a unique part of the image of God and each reflecting that image. So. So what? What this is saying is that God is seeking to grow us into maturity, and maturity is in the body of Christ to find our place, to know our place to live, our place.


[00:17:49] And so in our whole interior life, then according to Von come, it's it's going to be congenial. What do you mean? In other words, it's going to be it's going to be it's going to be who he's created me to be. It's according to its genius. In other words, with its genius, this is the note the Lord created me to play. This is the the symphony he's invited me to be part of. He's the director. I've got an instrument to play. And through his grace in my own interiority, I'm learning how to do that. All of those crises and all that we've been talking about earlier can unfold into a deep sense of knowing the deep. Yes, that deep is yes, this is what I've this is what I was created to do. This is who he wants me. This is how he wants me to reflect his glory. This these are the notes he wants me to sing over on the relational side. What begins to unfold is a true sense of loving compassion. For others, that sense of loving others with the same God type love that I have received. Then down on the situated area where He specifically placed me. Then what begins to unfold is a genuine and humble, a genuine and humble sense of confidence. The confidence that. All right. I can I can step into what he's called me to be. If he's called me to be a pastor, then I can. He can. He will. He has. He's given me these gifts and so humble myself and allow others to speak into my life wherever his place, me, I, I can. I can well handle the things of God. No arrogance here. No, No arrogance, but a sense that, yes, I can fly the airplane.


[00:20:28] He's asked me and I thank him for that ability. I praise him for that, that that confidence that this is this is where I'm supposed to be. Now, in like manner when you look up on the global and where I'm I'm called to to impact the world for his sake, then there is a sense of competence, confidence in the good work of God and in the work he's doing, which results in competence, in the expressions that I share with others, the ministry that I am doing for others. Now, always, always, always. These things are going to be marked by courage. We become some 27 people who were taking the strength of the Lord, were taking the courage of the Lord. Always, always, always. These things are going to be marked by community. The work of God's church is a work done with others who are in Christ as well. I'm not called to lead out a singularity. I'm called to lead as a team, to be a member of a team, to be a member of the body of Christ where I'm loving others. Along those same lines, there is a there's a sense of cooperation, loving cooperation. You know, and even deep hospitality is going to go in here where I'm learning to work with others in not just in a compassionate way, but to work well with them, to learn how to work as a team. And then over here, I think what we're going to see unfold between our immediate situated place and our own interiority, we're going to have a sense of Khan formation and everybody needs this. What's confirmation? You know, it's not only an interior sense of a confirming interior sense that the Lord really is at work in my life, but the community itself will affirm that.


[00:23:23] And that's why it's so important for us to be Barnabas people, people who love and encourage others and seek to move them through our encouragement into the competence that Christ has for them. Now, there's going to be a balance through all of this. Definitely. Definitely. On the on the personal side, we're going to have to see the firm ness of Christ at play over here. What is that? In other words, I'm firm here. When I am given the task, I'm called to stay with it, not to be divided in so many directions that I cannot do that or so unfocused in life that I cannot accomplish the vocational calling of my life. But yet all firmness makes for a very mean person. You know, not a fun not a fun person to be around. So on the other side, on the relational side, then I'm called to carry that delicate balance also of gentleness. So gentleness is saying that, you know what basically is having mercy on the fallen of others. Delicate balance, firmness, gentleness. If you fall off too far on the gentle side, then you're never really going to be able to speak any kind of a word or any kind of a corrective word or any kind of a directing word into somebody. It's all going to be, Oh, that's okay, honey, don't worry about it. And that, in the long run is not necessarily helpful. If you fall off too heavy on the firm side, then you're going to come across as overbearing. Hard to get along with. Nobody is going to want to be around you. So it's a both. And here, that sweet, sweet, delicate balance between firmness and gentleness. So in conclusion, what is this thing? What is this thing saying to me? I'm bringing every aspect of my life into the same adoration at all.


[00:26:09] Going on in the Holy Trinity. I'm bringing all things in submission to Christ every area of my life. I'm taking the courage to the Lord. I'm living in community. I'm seeking to genuinely get along with others. You know, Paul had something. Paul had quite a bit to say about this. I am both offering confirmation for others and I am receiving confirmation from others. And then these different these different things then begin to work in harmony together. The early church loved, especially Augustine, loved the word concentrate from sonar to sound in common with, you know, it's that harmonious sounding together of all the parts. Well, that that makes for happiness, holiness and happiness. Holiness and happiness always go hand in hand. The harmonious sounding together of all of the parts may the harmonious sounding together of all the parts, be an increasing reality in your life. So let's reflect on this and see where we are and what our questions. I just was thinking, and this is maybe just another way to say it, is that again, at a very practical level for a pastor going true to his work, that it's really one where you you have to look at each of the four corners. Yes. And ask yourself, is this in balance in my life? Am I am I doing nothing but working on my competence? But I don't have any compassion on people. I mean, different pastors will have different sets of gifts that will allow them to be stronger in one area or another. Yeah, yeah. But all need need to have that balance of all of us. Is that another way to say the same thing? Well, and let's let's follow through. So if I'm spending, for instance, all of my time with people, well, we're called we're called love people, We're called spend time with people.


[00:28:32] Jesus himself spent quite a bit of time with people. But if I'm spending the vast majority of my time with people to the exclusion of having interiority time, you know, time where I am alone out on the hillside with the father in prayer, where I am taking the time to hear from the Lord, not just to hear in order to preach his sermon, which we want you to hear before you preach, but not just for a functional aspect, but to honestly hear and to be so immersed in God's Word that I'm allowing the word to speak to me first. And I don't just go to the word to get a sermon. It's a both in. So yeah, I love it. Bill What you're saying we're doing, we're doing a both and we're balancing, you know, am I so caught up in the functional side of where I'm situated that I neglect my own family or my own friends? Whatever. Yeah, you're you're right. So very, very good insight. Thank you. Any other questions for we on? Yes. So the cooperation you mentioned cooperation relating to people and co-op. Riding with people. But I see it for myself. I thought when when you put that up for me, what speaks to me is cooperating with the Holy Spirit. O in the action of, you know, how he's trying to intervene in my life to help bring the balance to cooperate in that as well as, you know, relationally with people, but to cooperate with the Holy Spirit. Yeah, I mean, you just open up a huge door, but it's so important. I mean, in our in our work with with people, we want to be that's ultimately what we want to do. We want to be side by side with others cooperating with the Holy Spirit.


[00:30:33] This is how the Holy Spirit will cease to go. And in our work with people, whether you're in congregational leadership, church leaders, super, whether you're running a family at home, you know, when you find yourself always pressing against people as as a disposition, you know, you're always having to come against. Now don't do that. Don't do that. Of course, any mother of young children, that might be a little bit of an exception. You do have to guard and God the little children. But but no, I'm talking about later on when there's no cooperation, what is always pressing, you know, who wants to work with a person like that? That's not that's not good. Or look at the other hand, my movement. So you're always flying away from people. You know, you don't want to take a chance of. You definitely don't want to be in any kind of conflict with them. You avoid conflict, so you fly away. Or look at the other hand, let's say you're always just trying to meld with somebody and say, Oh, whatever you want, you know, wouldn't it be nice if a certain wife would would do that at least every now and then? But no, I'm kidding. There are times when I do need to come again. There are times when I need to get away. There are times when I need to meld, you know, to just give way and say whatever you know, you say, but not disposition, not, not, not to slip into those horrible want. So I think Dianne's right to cooperate with the Holy Spirit. How do you want this situation to unfold? That's that's what I'm after. That's what an obedient daughter and son of the Lord does. This is so good.


[00:32:24] I bless you in the name of Christ and pray you will as you process anthropology. Most of all, what we're doing is focusing on our Lord and seeking to bear all aspects of our lives the personal life, the communal life, the situated life, the mondial, or the greater global life, all of that. We're bringing that into submission to Christ. May the Lord bless you and keep you and make His face to shine upon you. May the Lord be gracious unto you and give you His peace. Amen.