“And so, brothers, select seven men who are well respected and are full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will give them this responsibility.”Acts 6:3
As the Church grew in size it grew in infrastructure. In other words, there was more work to be done. Therefore more volunteers were needed. Some of the believers did not think they were receiving a fair portion of the gifts. The Disciples were busy with teaching and leading so they were not available to settle the dispute. The solution? Select 7 men to oversee the project. Our first instance of delegation in the early Church.
Among the seven chosen was Stephen. He was a man “full of faith and of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 6:5). Stephen was a man who loved Jesus and loved people. He humbly led the distribution to ensure everyone received a fair amount. He is an example for us today of living The 168 Life. He went about his day serving the Lord in word and action.
His life was such an example of the The 168 Life that the Temple leaders took notice and tried to get him to stop. They gathered false testimony against him so to charge him with blasphemy (speaking falsely against God). But this did not stop Stephen. He shared his love for Jesus even when a jail sentence was threatening.
See, Stephen was chosen by God to serve in the Church and with his life. Stephen knew that God was with him every step of the way. He did not need to fear the lies that were being said against him. He trusted God to protect him even if it meant death (That’s next week’s post).
For us today, we are chosen by God to serve. Some it is as a pastor or on a church staff. Others it may be as a teacher guiding children on their learning journey. Still others in the medical profession caring for people. Or in the corporate world helping products & systems get to people.
Wherever God has led you, you have been chosen by God to serve right where you are as you are. Fancy degrees are not necessary. Simply be like Stephen telling people about Jesus in word and action. As you do your job work with integrity leading by example. As you go about your personal life care for friends and neighbors with love.
When difficulties arise, probably not as severe as false testimony like for Stephen, trust that God is with you always. You have been chosen to serve. Be confident in the gifts & passions God has placed in your heart.
As you start each day ask God where/who you are being led to serve. Seek for the opportunities to share why you love Jesus. Care for another who may not be expecting the gift of service. You can open the door for the person behind you or the one coming in as you are leaving a building. Or smile to another as you pass each other on the sidewalk or bike trail.
Each of these are small services we are all called (directed) by God to do as disciples. Each one share the love of God with the world.
So go out chosen disciple of Jesus Christ. Go out and serve as you have been gifted to serve.
This Week’s Challenge
Write down at the end of each day how you serve someone that day with the love of God. Did you help a neighbor? Reach out to a friend to check on them? Run an errand for someone that was not able to do so themselves?