‘To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naive, To the youth knowledge and discretion, A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction. ‘ Proverbs 1:2-7
On the radio the other day, I heard a man state, “as disciples we should each have a Paul, a Barnabas and a Timothy in our life.” As I thought about that, I agreed. I’d take it a step further in saying, in doing so, we liken ourselves to all three, as well.
In most avenues of my life I realize the greatest rate of growth if I both assume and surround myself with the personification of the roles of those three purposes.
Applying it to my progression as a hunter and archer, it indeed becomes very evident. Since my beginnings, I’ve had a Paul, that mentor type to guide, encourage and, when needed, correct and rebuke. They are persons of experience, wisdom, patience and leadership. They are people I trust to lean on, to teach and guide my growth. I still have and rely on my Paul(s).
Having a Paul, I am therefore a Timothy, the student. I become the embodiment of a vessel in need of fulfillment. The day we stop seeking to learn is the beginning of the end of our development.
By embodying the purpose of a Paul, Timothy(s) come within my sphere of influence. I can help to instruct and develop future hunters and archers. I provide wisdom, guidance and, when needed, correction and rebuke. Passing on the torch to the next generation of woodsmen is critical for the perpetuation of our hunting heritage. In being a Paul for other’s I gain additional insights and refinement, as well. One of the greatest of teachers, is to teach. When guiding others, I learn just as much about the subject and myself, as by any other means.
Lastly, whether chasing game in the mountains or here at home, I have my Barnabas”. This person is my confidant, my partner with whom I share a similar attitude and mission directive. We cooperate and communicate in order to accomplish these things. We are each other’s support system, second set of eyes, hands, ears and feet. We depend on each other and our success is the result of cohesive collaboration. In having a Barnabas, I become a Barnabas for another as well.
As I walk the path of discipleship, it is important for me to be mindful of the relationships I cultivate. Being sure to incorporate a Paul, for wisdom, instruction and rebuke, a Timothy, for passing on the perpetuation of our faith, and a Barnabas to walk along side me through the journey. By doing so, I assure myself a greater refining of the person God would see me become. My walk and witness is deeper and more fruitful. The exclusion of any one of these personas, or failure to embody them in oneself, serves only to steepen the curve. Have a blessed weekend.
‘But you are a chosen race , a royal priesthood , a holy nation , a people for God’s own possession , so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; for you once were not a people , but now you are the people of God ; you had not received mercy , but now you have received mercy . ‘ 1 Peter 2:9-10
In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy