I had the joy of hearing Kenneth Hagin Jr about twenty years ago, and he told about how he was discouraged as a young Bible College student because all the churches he went to preach in complained he sounded like his father. His dad laughed and pointed out that you should absolutely should sound like your father!
I love that, you should sound like your father! And in ministry, God has provided for us 10,000 teachers but very few fathers, and it is good that you sound like your father. If you call a preacher your spiritual father then you should sound like them! You should be in alignment with them! God has provided you with a few fathers – maybe one or two or three. Your job is to recognize them, find them and grow up like them!
And I think that preachers are much healthier when they are part of the kingdom of God and have spiritual fathers. Timothy had Paul as a spiritual father, and the church at Ephesus was healthier for it.
Now I am not talking about joining some sort of hierarchy, I am not talking about paying $250 a month to call someone your spiritual father – I thought fathers took care of their children?! I am talking about having a relationship with someone through listening to them, learning from them, being discipled and moulded by them so you do not have to re-invent the wheel for yourself and that you do not have to make some dumb mistakes.
At the moment I have just heard a preacher I know tell an audience that he is a rare special preacher chosen for the last end times move. Trust me that will only lead to error, and having a spiritual father or two or three would be a lot more healthy. The truth is all preachers are special, and we all have a destiny, let’s stop comparing ourselves with others and compare with Jesus! Compared to Jesus we all have a way to go in purity, in heart-love, in wisdom and so on!
Do you want to be a great teacher in the body of Christ? There are loads around, find one you like and follow and learn and grow and be discipled and be fathers. You want to pastor a great church, there are many great churches out there – find the men who pastor them and learn from them!
Thoughts of being special and unique often keep people away from meeting mentors who will father them and raise them up into a great ministry. It’s pride. That’s what it is.
I have never met a man great in ministry who did not have a spiritual father or two – people who sowed into their life and inspired them, challenged them, and rebuked them! Never.
Every great evangelist has a great evangelist they are like. Every great pastor, every great teacher. Your greatest victories come from the people who you associate with and learn from and get DNA from.
Why does having a spiritual father in your life produce so much power?
- You are instantly humble. You are admitting you don’t know it all, and you are not God’s next great thing with no respect or honour to those who have gone before
- You cannot boast any more, you are just grateful for those who have impacted your life – you know without their voice you would be nowhere!
- You are going to be part of a generational link, because after what you have received there is no way you are not going to pass it onto the next generation.
It multiplies the impact of ministry on the world. You need a spiritual father or two or three!