Carey Madding 

Today's Scripture: “And the Lord said to him, ‘Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. And when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. And Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint to be king over Israel, and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint to be prophet in your place,’” (I Kings 19:15-16, ESV). 

Theme: We are not meant to carry on the work forever; we need to be training the next generation of leaders to replace us. 


Unlike Elijah, we usually don’t have the privilege – or the fear – associated with knowing that our time is almost done. Most often, God asks us to pour into other people, modeling leadership and servanthood in a more general way. However, Jesus is clear that this is a part of our “job” as believers; we are to teach and disciple others. This does not just mean have a Bible study with them, though that is a part of it. It means bringing them alongside as we take a meal, say a prayer, have a difficult conversation, and more. We are to be “emptying our cup” to the coworker beside us in His fields.  


We know it is crucial that the work continues without too much turmoil. In fact, I have left for vacation and said these words to my office mate: “If something happens to me, here is the important stuff.” Have you ever had that thought at work, preparing for your death or injury in some minor way? Maybe we love the feeling of being indispensable, but we also feel the responsibility to prepare others.  

Sometimes we do sense a change coming. We may decide our time is almost up at the company or our family is considering a move, which would necessitate resigning and relocating. We begin to really train our replacements in earnest. This is the responsibility of any employee or staff member. Do this well, with intentionality, integrity, and transparency. 


Like Elijah, sometimes God tells you it is the end of one season and the start of another. If you have been serving for a long time in one area and now feel called to another, God will give you direction. He will help you end well and start anew. He may have you train a replacement and walk with them for a while. If this is the case, share your insights, but loosen your hold. Be available, but not bossy. Coach from the sidelines, not over their shoulders.  

If God gives you insight into the end of your season, don’t worry or fret. Don’t hang on tightly. At exactly the right time, God’s replacement will be obvious. Then, you will feel comfortable in relaxing that death grip on your job or ministry, because He has provided. He always does.  

Make It Personal: Is there an area of your life where you are hanging on too tightly? Maybe you don’t want the kids to do a certain chore or your coworker to touch that one project. Maybe in your serving area, you have certain duties that you don’t share. Start training the coworker beside you, your child, or your ministry partner. Having depth of coverage doesn’t take away your value. Instead, it gives you freedom! And being a great trainer and mentor makes you an asset in any situation. Plus, God said for us to disciple others, so get busy! 

Pray: Lord God, thank You for the opportunity to learn the skills and wisdom I have. Help me not to hoard it, but to willingly share, train, and mentor others. Help me to seek out opportunities to come alongside others, support them, and share what I know. Show me Your plan as I go through my day. Help me to be gracious and patient, as Jesus is with me. In His Name I pray, Amen. 

Read: Romans 15:13-14; Luke 9:1-6; Deuteronomy 31:1-8, 14-15 

Weekly Memory Verse: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20, ESV