The Bow and Arrow

Posted: April 6, 2017 in Chairman

In March, we had a Senior Ministers’ Council and it was a great joy to spend time with about 40 Senior Ministers of the AG; to appreciate them and acknowledge their great value and contribution to the Kingdom of God. We affirmed that all of us are a product of these Senior Leaders who have impacted us at some time in our lives who I also believe that they will continue to influence the next generation.

Friends and Fathers

Last month I shared the importance of having a Friend, but equally, you also need a Father.  Fathers are the ones who define the future generations. There may be some of you who have gone through difficult times with your fathers. There are many who have been abandoned, neglected or rejected by their earthly fathers. Maybe similar things happened to you with your Spiritual Fathers. Whatever it is, we all needed them.

Hebrews 12:9 says:

“Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live.”

Bow and Arrow                             

Fathers and sons portray two different generations. I had lots of difficulty and friction as a teenager with my father. He belonged to a different time period and he could not understand my generation. Similarly, in spiritual life too, there are two generations. Therefore it is important to realize the value of both the senior and young ministers.

This is illustrated in the form of a ‘Bow and Arrow.’ Let me explain. Historically the bow and arrow was one of the most important weapons used for both hunting and warfare for thousands of years. Until guns were invented, about 400 years ago, the bow and arrow was the main weapon used in offensive strategy.  The advantage of the bow and arrow was the ability to use it from a distance – unlike the sword which was used in close proximity making it dangerous. However, in the Bible, there is an important lesson about the ‘Bow and Arrow.’

The Importance of Bows.  

The Bow refers to Strength.  Jacob’s blessing his sons says:

But his bow remained in strength, And the arms of his hands were made strong.  By the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob… Gen 49:24.

The warriors of old had to depend on the bow’s strength in order to shoot the arrows, so it had to be strong, sturdy and unbreakable. The Senior Leaders are like Bows; they are strong, experienced and long established leaders of the movement. They have served the Lord many years, bringing strength and stability to the Church. They were the pioneers of many great churches and have laid a strong foundation for the future.

Here are some important features about the Bows.
  • Bows should be strong, if they are to be effective.
  • Bows are made of strong material like wood, hardened and seasoned.
  • Bows also need to be flexible, able to bend. It is this ‘bending’ that makes it a bow.
  • It also must have an arch. This arch gives the ability to spring, to stretch and come back to its normal shape so it can be used regularly.
  • Bows initiate. It is the bows that a warrior first takes into his hand.
  • Bows determine the direction.

Just think of the Senior leaders who have mentored you. They were strong having many of the above qualities and prepared you to be what you are today.

However, in relation to their effectiveness the following is important:
  • Bows must be connected to arrows.
  • Without arrows, the bows are of no use.
  • It is the connection between the bow and arrow that makes it an effective weapon.
  • Bows stays in one place; but the arrows travel.
  • The bow never travels but must stay steady, firm and in one place.
  • Arrows go further than the bow!
    • Therefore, the Bow is of no use unless it is connected to the Arrows, which gives the arrow the ability to travel far distances and hit targets, which the bow couldn’t ever reach.
Importance of Arrows:

Arrows represent the Younger Generation – who are full of life and energy, wanting to go somewhere and do something for the Kingdom.

They are sharp, pointed and straight. They are made to travel fast and quickly.

They need direction and targets. They don’t want to just sit around and do nothing.

They don’t want to be in the quiver all the time.

The Young arrows of our Movement are vital for the Future of the Organization.

They will go further – they will go where the Bow has not been!

The Connection between the Bow and Arrows.

Bow and arrows must be connected together to reach the future.

We see these principles in Biblical Examples.

  • Moses and Joshua had a Bow and Arrow relationship, always connected.

Although Moses could not enter the Promise Land, He was able to shoot Joshua as an arrow – to lead the next generation to the Land.

  • Elijah was a bow that connected with the arrow Elisha. He was able to launch Elisha into a ministry which was double that of his.
  • Jesus ministered as a Bow; He made His disciples like arrows and connected with them for 3 years. Then he launched them, or shot them, far beyond where he had ever been – to the Ends of the Earth!
  • Paul had Timothy, Titus and others as arrows. While he was in prison, these people went beyond where Paul could go and did what he couldn’t.

Can you see the picture of the Bow and Arrow?

The bow and Arrow connection is vital, just as is the Friendship connection.

Role of the Bows and Arrows together:

a.   Relationships:  We want the Senior Leaders to provide strength from their past experiences. Don’t think that any of your past experiences were in vain. God is able to use every experience you have been through to help others when you relate to the younger generation. Everything that happened to you can purposefully be used to help the next generation.

b.   ‘Tension & Friction’  When bows and arrows function together, there must be ‘Tension & Friction’ between them. The bow has to be stretched causing tension which determines the speed of the arrow.

Similarly, the arrow undergoes friction with the bow; for if there is no friction, then there is no direction.

Normally, this tension and friction is often experienced between senior leaders, assistants and workers. But this is a good thing. At first, there may have been disagreements and differences of opinion, which caused tension and friction. But the more you relate to each other, there is a better flow.  Young ministers must not leave or get discouraged because of friction. I was an Assistant Pastor for over 10 years. But those were the days God was preparing the arrows.  Under Senior Leaders, God prepares His arrows in the Younger generation.

“He made me into a polished arrow and concealed me in his quiver.” (Isaiah 49:2)

c.   Anointed Arrows.   In the olden days, they anointed the arrows so there would be less friction. Having the anointing is important for young ministers. If you don’t seek your anointing from the Holy Spirit, your experience with the Bow will cause friction, bitterness and disappointment.

d.  Bow determines the distance of the Arrow.   This is an important principle the younger ministers must learn. At the last senior ministers meeting, many of us testified that it was because of the seniors influence that we were able to advance in our ministry. If the young ones get discouraged, give up quickly, do not connect with leaders, they will not go very far in the ministry.

e.  Bow must release the Arrow.  If the senior bows don’t release the young arrows, they will not go anywhere. There comes a time when there should be transition, releasing and letting go of the younger leaders.

I wrote this article last week and now I am finishing this in Singapore while attending the AG World Congress. The theme of the Congress is Generations; focusing on the importance of raising up the Next Generations! One of the sessions was about how Senior Pastors released their churches to the next leaders. Sister Naomi Dowdy in Singapore, whom many of you know, released her church to a young leader – Dominic Yeo, who has taken the Church to even greater heights in God. This is a very good example of the Bow and Arrow ministry.

Our Young Arrows are the ministers under 40 years!

They are very important because they are the future of our Movement and we must launch them to their Destiny in God.

  • Arrows are useless without the Bow.
  • They may be strong, powerful and sharp, but they must connect with the Bow to be effective.
  • Arrows are prepared, straightened for use. They are not for themselves. Their future and direction is dependent on the Bow.

In closing, I encourage every Senior Bow to keep connecting to the younger generation. Try and adopt a young minister without any conditions and be a father to them. You don’t have to own their ministry or be the leader – you can be a father. I encourage Young Arrows, to seek the guidance and advice of the Fathers. You can learn and be blessed so much through them.

The Lord Bless you.

Pastor Michael

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