Developing Labourers in Character and Skills
Posted on 25 Jan 2022
by Jonathan Kwa, Labourer from NYP Ministry
Labourers are crucial to advancing the Gospel into the nations. We must develop them in character and skills to be effective in the harvest.
Character and skills are best shaped when a person is young, life upon life in the context of a community.
Jonathan Kwa, one of our labourers from the NYP Ministry, recently attended the Asia Pacific Campus Forum (APCF) organised by the Asia Pacific Navigators. Here is his sharing from what he has learnt:
In his teaching on ways we can intentionally develop character and skills in a person, he quoted Paul’s word in Philippians 3:12—
“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me”, and he exhorted us to:
“Be in it yourself — This is what it means to lead with the integrity of heart and skillful hands! Doing so will gain the trust of the people we are helping. Your own experience and lessons learned will be a great resource in helping others. Be a pacesetting coach! Paul is an example of that, and he also exalted Timothy to do the same.”
It is a good reminder that as much as God is the primary developer of people, He is also the primary developer of my life.
As I understand my part in working together with Him to develop others, I am also reminded that God uses these same principles to develop Christ-like character in me for His purposes.
One area of development is to love Jesus by obeying Him wholeheartedly. There was a period of time when some of the guys I was leading and discipling sought the Lord for different matters, and whenever I shared the Word to them about making decisions to love Jesus, I felt God using the same scriptures to remind me to do the same.
A personal example in my life was obeying Christ to continue working at the hospital. I was seeking the Lord regarding my career decision because my employment bond with the hospital had already ended.
During the process, I saw how my heart leaned towards choosing to leave because of the stressful nature of the job, both physically and mentally, and staying on means that I will be placed in the COVID-19 team.
God personally led me with Jeremiah 42:6,10 to stay —
“Whether it is favourable or unfavourable, we will obey the Lord our God, to whom we are sending you, so that it will go well with us, for we will obey the Lord our God.” (v6); “If you stay in this land, I will build you up and not tear you down; I will plant you and not uproot you, for I am grieved over the disaster I have inflicted on you.” (v10).
While encouraging others to love Christ by obeying Him, God is doing the same work in my life to be a pacesetting discipler who loves Him through obedience to Him — to be in it myself!”