Jesus and Newbies

~day 157: the kingdom of God~
Image by theroamincatholic via Flickr

When I was handed my first stint as a church worker, I was all pumped up ready for the get go. There were many things to learn and unlearn. I was looking forward to be mentored and all that. I mean stuff fresh grads get in their first stint as a “full-time worker” in church.

As time progressed some of my enthusiasm faded with it. Well maybe you could blame me for being a newbie on that. Stress was constantly made on mentoring but with little emphasis on giving opportunities for their apprentice.

And so when there was a decision on handing me responsibilities on heading the youth group, I was exited and nervous at the same time. Well blame me still for being new here again. I can’t really explain how I feel but I had the feeling of both excitement and pressure at the same time. Of anticipation and running away from responsibilities.

Well, I can’t say that I was ready and all that but when is someone actually ready to take responsibilities, really?

Anyway I soon found out that although I was available the church board was looking for an experienced person to do the thing. I was disappointed as well as relieved at the same time. I mean it was good in a way that the pressure was off. But it soon dawned on me that no one was ready to risk it all on some newbie who does not know head or tails about starting a youth ministry.

In some ways I perceived that the leadership was not ready to mentor although there was stress on mentoring. Maybe we stress stuff we are not inclined to do. I guess we do that all the time.

But this made me think more about when Jesus called his band of disciples, the unlearned leaders of this kingdom of God movement that he was preaching about.

Truth be told, they were not leadership material. They were not perfect. They rebuked the master, they did not understand his teachings, they were cowards and all the bad stuff really. But well warts and all they were the chosen ones. One even failed Jesus, in a way that he committed suicide.

But a lesson that we can see here is that Jesus did not look for the experienced ones. Although experience is a good thing and to which there is wisdom in following that direction. The point here is Jesus was willing to train nobodies and make them into great leaders that would assume the role of progressing his mission.

We have to remember that in the years of their apprenticeship they did not progress much. They were at best great failures. But in the end they turned out to be people who were turned from timid sheep to roaring lions.