The healing of the land requires that fathers and sons connect to each other and bring a restoration of relationship. All change that takes place in the world must happen in the context of relationships.
And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers . . . Malachi 4:10
Spiritual fathers are critical to the fulfillment of this prophecy, but so is the rise of sons and daughters. Sometimes we can look to spiritual fathers but we do not take responsibility to live as sons. Both identities must rise up together in order for the healing of the land to take place.
Want to rise up as a son? Looking to raise up sons around you? Here are some signs of those who are ready to become a spiritual son or daughter.
1. You will know them by their pursuit.
This sets people apart from the rest. True sons have a hunger and a passion that they act on. They are in pursuit of growth, learning and development more than anyone else. They position themselves to learn and grow in everything they do.
One thing I have learned is that you can teach skills, you can impart tools of the Kingdom, but you cannot teach passion. Passion has to be stirred up from within. I can motivate you and inspire you, but I cannot give you long term passion. You must connect to that. The “want to” is something that each of us has to cultivate in our own hearts.
Otherwise, everyone becomes full of cheap talk. We say we want something, but there is no daily, passionate pursuit of that which we say. People say they want breakthrough, but they don’t want to sit under someone, invest in conferences or get personal coaching to move into the next level.
Sons reveal themselves because they seek out fathers to learn from. And they are willing to do whatever it takes to get there.
Pursuit tells you who someone really is.
If they are not pursuing then it becomes a waste of time for true spiritual fathers to invest in them.
2. You will know them by their heart to serve.
A son has no agenda but to add value to others. They don’t need to push their resume and flaunt titles. Sons don’t get involved in comparison or competition with others, because they just love seeing others succeed. They have no other agenda than to bless.
Most sons have to go through seasons where they have to learn to serve in very humble ways. They often face times of the wilderness where their heart is being tried and their process is being formed through humble service. Those seasons of serving are designed to build their heart for the long term.
3. You will know as you watch how they are able to handle authority.
How a person responds to authority is one of the greatest marks of how far they will go in life. Submission and honor to authority identifies whether or not people will live as slaves or sons.
Authority is God’s environment to break rebellion, pride and stubbornness out of our lives. When we respond correctly to authority, we give greater room for promotion, blessing and overall growth.
There are amazing talented people in the Kingdom of God. But can they get under someone’s authority? Can they lead but also submit to someone else easily when the situation arises? Too many are so self-consumed by their own mission, they want to lead but have no desire to come under another leader.
Over the years, I have had hundreds of people tell me their dreams and goals. As I listen to them, most of the descriptions talk about forming their own business, starting their own church or forming their own ministry. Few to none have “serving and learning under someone” as a part of their journey. We’ve become so independently minded that we have no clue how to submit ourselves under another authority figure.
4. You will notice how they handle correction.
One of God’s litmus tests for sonship is the arena of correction. (Hebrews 12:6) I am not talking about correction that is shaming and humiliating, but honest and loving correction. This is usually the biggest and final test in the process of developing a son’s heart.
This must be observed, because correction is always uncomfortable. But if I a son can work through it and grow with a humble heart, they will be able to soar as son. It also helps them to not be ignorant to blind spots in their life.
Most leaders who get taken out often have blind spots they ignore because they have never been under a fathering relationship where they could receive important correction.
5. You will know over time.
This cannot be rushed. Relationship, credibility and trust must be built over time. Seasoned time will tell if someone is really serious about walking as a powerful son in the Kingdom.
You will observe many with great potential fade away. Time revealed their heart. This is all part of the journey.
Warning: Do not start calling someone your spiritual son, especially when they have not voluntarily agreed to that relationship. In fact, I don’t advise saying it at all until there has been a great deal of time passed and fruit of this relationship being established. I think its best to let the sons identify their spiritual fathers so there is no lording over.
- Where is God challenging you to grow as son? In what way can you grow as a spiritual son before Father God, so that you can also be a spiritual father to the next generation?
- In what relationship do you need to become more of a son to someone who can breathe things of the Kingdom of God into your life?
- Who do you know that has these traits that you can encourage today?
- Begin learning the mindset of serving and do it with excellence.
- Ask, “What can I do to add value to your life?”
- Stay around and find things to help.
- Cultivate a teachable spirit in all things.