Today’s Scripture: For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand.  I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:  Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. 2 Timothy 4:6-8

This devotional is an excerpt from Dr. Scudder’s new book, LEAD.

When Paul wrote to Timothy, he imparted to his son in the Lord many important points. Paul had gone through much to establish all the churches on his missionary journeys. He was run out of cities, stoned with rocks, left for dead, shipwrecked, and more. Today, many pastors are being persecuted for their faith in China, Turkey, and many other countries, and I know Paul would be able to identify with their troubles. As he was writing this letter, he was in prison and was imparting some of his last words about leadership to Timothy.

Christ came to earth, lived a perfect life, died for our sins, rose again, and now sits at the right hand of God Almighty. We have our Savior’s wonderful Book, the Bible, which gives us insight and help in each aspect of leadership.

When we follow the Scriptures, we won’t worry about being seeker- friendly or light on God’s Word. We won’t add principles that aren’t taught in Scripture. Instead, we will stay on course, steady and strong.

As leaders and pastors, we must never lose sight of our wonderful Savior. We must always uphold the Bible and its truth no matter what the world says.

Fellow pastor in the journey, whether you are in the early stages of growth, restarting a ministry, or growing something more from a foundation that has already been laid, know this: God is with you — in every step — in each breath. He is the One who controls the results. Growth is important. You have to grow as a church instead of die. But you have to leave the results up to the greatest power in the universe. We can only do things through His strength, but the day-to-dayness, especially when you want desperately to see a church grow, will challenge every fiber of your being.

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder