In Bob Hamp’s book, “Think Differently, Lead Differently,” he compares the work that he does currently with the work that he did formerly. He used to be a marriage counselor. He describes that work as connecting the husband and the wife so that they are able to communicate and work together independent of him. He points out the potential trap of marriage counseling in which the counselor would become the focal point.
If the husband and/or the wife comes to depend on the counselor to communicate with the spouse, then the counselor is a necessary 3rd member of the marriage instead of a facilitator of the marriage. While Bob is still a counselor, he has developed a significant freedom ministry. In that ministry, people need to connect to God. If they become dependent on the voice of Bob instead of the voice of God, then he has become a necessary 3rd member of the marriage instead of a facilitator of the marriage (Bride and Bridegroom).
The role of “facilitator” is critical to the making of disciples. If any potential disciple maker works with any potential disciple in such a way that the disciple does not become self-sufficient in relationship with the Bridegroom (Jesus), they have created a disciple of themselves and not of Him. The task at hand in disciple making is to connect the disciple to the One that is worthy of discipleship.
Richard Henderson has said that at the core, the requirements which qualify a facilitator are:
- They are able to NOT talk, and
- They reproduce
Of course, there are skills and abilities that are evident in facilitator and disciple makers beyond these two things but without these two abilities, the development of the potential facilitator is incomplete. These requirements are fascinating if you consider them for a few minutes. The first requirement is undoubtedly the least appreciated, most violated principle of spiritual leadership. It is not even considered valuable in most faith-based applications, yet it is critical to the hope of making disciples of Jesus instead of disciples of yourself.
- If we fill every void with our voice, we make no room for His voice
- If we are desperate to be heard, we are desperate to be applauded
- If we think it’s about what we have to say, then what we have to say is questionable.
It’s not about us, it’s about Him. If we’ll be carriers of Him in such a way that connects others to Him, they will carry Him, too. He’ll get the glory and we’ll get the privilege of sharing in the purpose. We will facilitate heaven on earth for and in others.