Healthy Leaders


Toward Planting Seeds

Brent HooverBrent Hoover

Whenever I hear a new song that is amazing and really speaks life to my soul, it reminds me of what it feels like to be a person who just heard, understood, and believed the Gospel. It feels like: “Where has this been all my life, and why haven’t I known about it?”

My 85-year-old uncle (the younger brother of my father) and I have recently reconnected. He’s been far from God his whole life and just never interested. I’ve always felt I should have reached out to my extended family more. I doubt anyone else will.

So I took a step of faith and asked him if he would like to talk each month by phone, and read and talk about a book called The Reason for God by Tim Keller. He agreed, and we had our first call a couple days ago. To my surprise he’d read quite a bit of the book, more than I had. And he opened up about suffering in his own life. It is so tempting to speak too much when someone shares a story of pain ‒ to offer answers. I think I almost did. But hopefully he also heard me listening.

He asked me how I got my start in “religion.” So I got to share my story and the Gospel of Jesus.

How can people live their entire lives and never think about God and never really understand? And yet it happens often. I don’t want to ever get comfortable with the light of my knowledge of Christ. I don’t want to be, as Keith Green used to sing, “asleep in the light.”

Nothing has stimulated my faith in God, prayers to God, study of God, and joy in God and the Gospel like sharing it with people intentionally.

Taking the initiative to share the Gospel in the power of the Holy Spirit and leaving the results to God – that’s always been a challenge in my mind that I’ve taken up, and yet sometimes far too much time goes by in between those chances. Usually it’s because I have not been looking for them, praying for them, or stepping out by faith to create them.

Even after understanding the Gospel, some people have a slow response to it; for others it is an immediate one. Their response is not my job, but my work is to plant seeds by being a winsome witness.

To be a leader, among other things, is to lead in how we obey Jesus and follow His example in how He reached out to people. Certainly this was one of the central things on His heart!

Who is He calling you to reach out to right now? Make a plan, and do it!

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