I think many times in the church we set ourselves up for disappointment because we have Unrealistic Expectations of certain leaders that either we like or that speak to us on a certain level. Because they speak to us at one level we automatically think that they can speak to us at every level that we may need or want them to.
It will serve us in good stead to remember Peter’s words to the lame beggar in Acts Chapter 3:
“Such as I have, give I thee.”
The Biblical principle is very simple. We can only give what we have. I often say: “If I haven’t received it, I can’t impart it, If I haven’t learned it, I can’t teach it, and If I haven’t been there, I can’t lead you there.”
It seems simple enough. It is even logical and makes sense. It is also spiritual, but yet it goes against the grain of how we think many times.
Please allow me to use myself as an example. Currently, one of my functions is to serve the Body and those Abba has granted me relationship with as a Spiritual Father. I did not always function this way throughout all of my 42 years of ministry. It may be true that God in His infinite wisdom and Omniscience saw me as this from when I answered the call to ministry at 17 years of age, but I certainly was not ready to walk in it.
All the years that I functioned as a “Screaming Evangelist” I did not have a Father’s Heart and was not able to function in this current capacity. All the years that I functioned as a “Prophet” I did not have a Father’s Heart until about 6 months before my Apostolic Commissioning in March of 2016, when Father spoke to me very clearly and said: “It is time for you to do for others what Leo (my earthly and spiritual father) did for you.”
It was at that moment that a Fathers Heart was dropped into my spirit. It was not developed or matured yet, but it was there in seed form. Now I could begin to function as a Spiritual Father because I had been Gifted/Graced for it.
To expect me to function as a Spiritual Father as a “Screaming Evangelist” would have been unrealistic because I did not have the capacity to do it. To expect me to function as a Spiritual Father as a “Prophet” would have been unrealistic because I did not have the capacity to do it.
So it is in many cases today. We expect folks to function in certain ways that we either want them to, or believe that they should, which is really unfair to them, if they have not been Graced/Gifted for it. They can only give us what they have according to their Grace/Giftedness.
I see many that are disgruntled, frustrated, and sometimes even upset because they are expecting someone to give them what they are incapable of giving. I could not Father until Abba graced me with a Fathers Heart. Even if I wanted to...I could not fulfill that function...because I wasn’t graced for it.
Every Gifting/Grace has certain things in their wheelhouse that they are good at, that they can impart, that they can teach, where they can lead...but expecting them to impart, teach, or lead apart from where and how they have been gifted or graced, is error on our part, not theirs.
Evangelists think a certain way and bring certain things to Ecclesia. Stirring the Body of Christ, Bringing Salvation, Healing, & Deliverance to the masses is their Forte; but being a Father is not! Prophets think a certain way and bring certain things to Ecclesia. Getting Believers to understand that they can hear God for themselves and seeing proper Biblical operation of the Manifestation Gifts of the Spirit in the assembly is their Forte; but being a Father is not!
How I long for the Body to cease putting Unrealistic Expectations on Leaders/Ministers, expecting them to function where they are not capable based on Gifting/Grace to function. Receive from them what they are Graced/Gifted to impart. Where they are not...realize that God has Graced/Gifted others with that aspect of what you need. It is up to you to recognize it and find it. God is faithful to His Body by providing a Plethora of Grace/Gifting to many vessels in the Body to minister to every member of the Body, by that which each has been Gifted/Graced with.
Ours is not a “One-Stop-Shop Kingdom” where one gift provides everything that we need. We must get past the False Leadership Paradigm of: “If I can’t give it to you, you don’t need it” and get it out of our thinking once and for all! Remember the words “Diversities” or “Varieties” depending on the Translation? God is BIG on them! He Believes in Them! He Practices Them! So should we! It is time that we stopped looking for folks to function where they can’t and had Realistic Expectations!