Summary: I Will Serve The Ministry Of My Church. God has called every believer to serve in the church.
Everybody Gets To Be A Deacon Mark 10:43-45
Covenant – Part Three
Several years ago a young wife and her husband stopped me at the back of the church. “I want my husband to be a Deacon,” she proclaimed, “what does he need to do?”
I knew what she was asking; she wanted to know what it took to be a part of our deacon ministry. She had been watching these men, admired them, and desired the same thing for her husband. I shared with her that her desire was certainly a good one – being a “deacon” is a good thing and our church certainly needs Godly men – if her husband would simply remain faithful to the Lord and the church the opportunity to be a deacon might come some day.
However, since that afternoon, I’ve always wished I would have said it a little differently… I wish I would have explained to her the reality that, yes her husband could be a deacon – and so could she from that very moment!
In fact – every active participant in FirstFamily gets to be a deacon!
Wait a minute, Paul, (you may be thinking) I thought you could only be a “deacon” if you were appointed by the church and lived up to the standards of 1 Timothy 3:8-13. We only have six deacons and I just read their names in the bulletin this morning!
And besides, what does being a deacon have to do with being a part of the family – a part of FirstFamily, our church?
We’ve been talking now for almost two months about family. We’ve talked about three “rooms” or environments that help create a family…(explain)
Now we’ve moved into the kitchen – where intimacy grows and family business is done. We’ve been sharing the principle that family is based on covenant relationship. Our church family – based first on God’s grace covenant with us and second on our covenant with each other.
We’ve been working our way through our church covenant. We’ve said that as a church we covenant together to protect, share, serve and support.
• We will protect the unity of our church.
That’s our priority. Jesus’ prayer for his followers was that we would act as one. We are to “strive to keep the unity of Spirit in the bond of peace.” Why, because the most powerful testimony of God’s work in us is when we all allow God to really work in us – controlled by His Spirit we walk in unity.
• We will share the responsibility of our church
That’s our purpose. What’s our purpose? To grow! Together we pray that God will grow our church – first deeper (roots of spirituality) and then outward (physical growth as we reach new people and touch our community for Christ.)
And today we want to talk about serving…
• We will serve the ministry of our church
Serving is the plan or strategy of the church. It’s how we are to do “business”. Just think about how we talk about church…it goes against just about everything in this world…
We call our meetings “services”
We call what we offer – “ministries”
The funds we receive are called “offerings”
When someone asks who is the “Pastor” they are asking who is the shepherd – that’s what pastor means. Who ever heard of shepherds being the “big guy” at the top of a secular corporation?
When we ask are the leaders we talk about pastors, overseers (responsibility), elders (experience) and deacons (servants).
And we say that every member is a minister!
Another way to say it is: Church is “down-side-up” compared to the rest of the world! Here’s how Jesus explained it to His disciples:
Mark 10:41-45 (NLT) When the ten other disciples discovered what James and John had asked, they were indignant. So Jesus called them together and said, “You know that in this world kings are tyrants, and officials lord it over the people beneath them. But among you it should be quite different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be the slave of all. For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give my life as a ransom for many.”
Jesus intends for His Church to be “Down-Side-Up” (not upside down). The way “up” is “down”.
Galatians 5:13 says it this way: “In love, serve one another!”
And that’s what we mean when we say everyone one get to be a deacon!
The word deacon is a powerful word. It is actually the combination of two words which mean “through the dust”. It’s the idea of moving so swiftly to meet a need that you literally “stir up the dust”.