Read: Acts 6
Think: Every person is unique, and everyone how believes in Jesus Christ as Lord is specifically gifted by the Holy Spirit! Isn’t this a great thing!
This passage from Acts brings out some of the great things about people being gifted differently. The early church was beginning to grow, and as they grew, they needed to put some systems in place. Twelve disciples could not have been the preachers, the caregivers, the money distributors, the fundraisers, and the ones with the most wisdom and knowledge from God. There was no way they could play all the necessary roles on their own.
When I read this passage I think the Jews that approached the twelve disciples were most likely unhappy with how things were going, they may have had a bit of ‘snottiness’ in their tone as they said, “Hey look! The widows in our community are being overlooked because you are too busy preaching!”
Instead of getting angry with this comment, the twelve thought about it, and realized….they needed to keep preaching. Another need did not mean they had another task to fill- it meant they needed to find other people, who could fill that need so they could continue to serve in the places where God had most gifted them…which was in preaching!
The Twelve clearly knew their role, and were not willing to let another “good cause” sidetrack them from the “great cause.” For them, they were talented preachers, spending time handing out food to widows would have wasted the talent the Holy Spirit gave them, and their numbers would not have been multiplying (vs. 7). However, the group of 7 men who were chosen to serve in this role were probably great at caring for widows and distributing food. The Twelve created a system, and were able to say no to something good, to pursue something better by simply looking at their gifts, and the gifts of others around them.
This makes sense to us, but do we really live it out? When we see a need in our community or something we aren’t happy with in our church or youth group- do we see what gifts we have to bring to the table to make it better? Or do we toss it on to the “Pastor” and get mad when he doesn’t deliver. Your pastor, or ministry leader does not have every gift. Let them focus on the things they are best at- the things God has gifted them at, and don’t demand that they be all things. If they are gifted at preaching, don’t make them spend all day in intense counseling sessions with people in need. And if they love to be a shepherd and care for people- let them do that, without demanding that they preach great sermons that keep everyone engaged.
The Holy Spirit has gifted each of us, so lets appreciate the gifts he’s given to others, while living our lives doing Kingdom work using the gifts he’s given us! We can’t be all things to all people, we’re simply not that flexible, but the body of Christ as a whole can be all things to all people. Appreciate the people around you!
Challenge: Write an encouraging email/text to your pastor today. Give them a few reasons why you appreciate them, and then remember to support them. Don’t force them into a box God didn’t design them for.
Pray: Ask God to continue revealing to you who he made YOU to be, and what gifts the Holy Spirit wants to see come alive in you.