Three Key Relationships of a Disciple

Every person who aspires to be a disciple of Jesus Christ would benefit from three key relationships in addition to their relationship with Jesus. We each need a "Paul" in our life. A "Paul" is one who has at least a little more life experience with the Lord, and who is willing to pass that along to us. Then we need a "Barnabus". A "Barnabus" is one who is on the discipleship journey with us and serves as an encourager. And finally, we each need a "Timothy"; one with whom we are sharing the things we have learned in our walk with the Lord.

In my personal experience, most of my "Pauls" have come via books, tapes, and conferences. On many occaisions the person(s) did not even know they were my Paul. My encouragers (or Barnabuses) have been both family members and friends who have prayed for me, listened to me and given me counsel that helped me on the journey. My Timothys have been those into whose lives I have poured the things that I have learned. Sometimes this has been done in group settings and sometimes one to one.
There have even been situations where I did not know that I was a Paul to someone until years later.
Truth is best transferred along the path of relationships. For the busy person in vocational ministry, the difficulty is establishing and maintaining the three key relationships. Jesus spoke and ministered to the multitudes; He trained and fellowshipped with the twelve; but He poured His life into the three (Peter, James and John). The way that breaks out for a pastor is, he preaches & ministers to the congregation; he trains and fellowships with the staff and he pours his life into the one or two who are the F.A.T.est. That means they are FAITHFUL, AVAILABLE, and TEACHABLE.
In being a disciple and a disciple-maker, one must not overlook these key relationships.

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