The principles and practices in this devotional were born in a powerful and challenging relationship. The Scriptures tell us that God works most often and most powerfully through the “iron sharpening iron” of vulnerable, inspiring, and honest connections with other believers. In this devotional, both Scott and John will tell the story of how they met and how the relationship began to grow. Scott will be the voice in days 1 through 3, and John will be the voice in days 4 through 6.
John’s question hit me right between the eyes. He asked, “Scott, will you give God one minute?”
The year was 2012, and I was out to breakfast with my good friend and fellow pastor John Bates. He had called earlier that morning with the urgent message: “Scott, we need to meet!”
Over the years, I had grown to trust John and his spiritual insights. He walks with God with a prophetic anointing. I had learned to listen when he speaks. That morning at breakfast, however, his question confused me. I instantly thought, Of course I’ll give God a minute. I’ve given Him my life, haven’t I? Everything I have belongs to Him. But I suspected that wasn’t what John was asking. Somehow, his question seemed deeper… more significant… more threatening. John took a deep breath and continued to push. He could tell by the look on my face that I really didn’t understand his question. He reworded it: “Scott, would you give God one minute of your service on Sunday morning?”
I suddenly realized he was challenging my leadership, my style, and even more, my identity as the kind pastor I had become. The timing, though, seemed very odd. I had just begun a new teaching series called “Open.” It was, ironically, about hearing the voice of God. John’s question was pushing me out of my well-insulated comfort zone.
Immediately, I thought of several quick and easy answers to his question, but I also realized none of them worked. Instead, many more questions popped into my mind: