By Andrew Stoddard
Have you ever had a Priscilla or Aquila in your life? A godly older couple or mentor who knew the way of God and wanted to share it with you? It takes a lot of patience and humility to helpfully share what you know about “the way of God” (Acts 18:26). Some folks have a great deal of theoretical knowledge about the way of God, but don’t have the heart or the time to make an investment. Others are so intently walking the way of God (a good thing) that they forget to pause and invest in others along the way. Still others haven’t matured enough spiritually to start making those investments.
A Priscilla-and-Aquila relationship is rare to come by. If you have the opportunity for spiritual mentorship of that kind, Scripture encourages it and affirms it—and you should certainly take advantage of it. On the other hand, it’s possible that God is calling you to be a spiritual mentor, to actively disciple a friend or acquaintance from church or your community. Is there someone that He may be asking you to take aside and explain the way of God?
One key approach that we can learn from these godly leaders in Acts is that “they invited [Apollos] to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately” (Acts 18:26, NIV). For these two, discipleship and spiritual investment started with hospitality. The old adage is true here when applied to spiritual growth: “People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.”
Priscilla and Aquila made a kingdom investment through a simple act of hospitality and friendship. From the comfort of their home, they carefully explained the scriptures to Apollos, who became one of the greatest teachers and preachers of his day.
It’s worth noting that while it’s debated by biblical scholars, Apollos is thought by some to be the writer of the book of Hebrews. Now, if that were true, it only amplifies the impact of this couple’s discipleship of Cornelius. Can you imagine? I doubt Priscilla and Aquila ever expected that sort of canonical ripple effect. They were simply loving their brother in faith well, while protecting the integrity of the gospel.
It just goes to show that you may never really know the full impact of a discipleship investment you make in another. Let’s make sure we are faithful in taking advantage of every opportunity that God places in our path to be discipled and offer discipleship in this frenetic age. It requires intentionality and a slowing of pace, but the impact is immeasurable.
Written by Andrew Stoddard
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