Summary: Teamwork, Empowering Others, Growth
The 3 C’s of a Healthy Church - Find the Right People to Serve
Acts 6:1-7 (p. 762) February 26, 2017
Jon Weece in the book “Jesus Prom” says:
“When we stop moving, we start dying. Too many churches are filled with too many people who are fans of Jesus but not followers of Jesus. The body of Christ doesn’t need more spectators. The body of Christ needs more servants…it needs more people who will go…because “Servants can go places Kings can’t.”
I met Gil the other night…and the first thing I noticed was Gil looks exactly like Danny Glover…in fact I said, “Man, you look exactly like Danny Glover.” He smiled and said, “I get that all the time…I’m not an actor, but I wish I had some of his money.”
I was at our Room in the Inn ministry where we house and feed men who need some help…and Karl VanDyke, one of our Elders gave me the privilege to pray with these guys and our volunteers before the meal.
And as I looked around at these men and the servants who had set up the beds, gone to get them, and prepare the meal I felt a great surge of emotion and just wanted to tell these folks: “We love you…we are so glad you are here and safe for tonight…and it’s a privilege to be here with you.” Kevin and Steve would stay and help these guys all night and in the morning, and then take them to a drop off place.
After I prayed…Gil came up to me and said, “Thank you…he was emotional and said, “Pray for our nation’s leaders, pray for our country…pray that we will be one.”
And we hugged each other…not the quick get it out of the way hug guys do a lot of the time, but a real hug, with all the emotions that go with it.
So when I read those words “Servants can go places Kings can’t,” Gil’s face came to mind, because when you serve you get to be where Jesus wants you to be…and you get to fall in love with the people Jesus fell in love with.
The Church was never meant to be confined to a building. The church was designed by Jesus to be a mobile, agile, flexible, and tangible movement of the Spirit of God. Wherever Christians go, that’s where the Church is. We don’t go to Church…we are the Church.
We assemble together to prepare and worship but our focus should always be toward Jesus and others…Upward and outward.
So who are the right people to serve? How do we identify, prepare them, and release them?
I think we have a great example in Acts Chapter 6:
I. IDENTIFY AND RELEASE SPIRIT FILLED AND GUIDED SERVANTS
The Apostles were the leaders and preachers in the early church. “Day after day in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah.” (Acts 5:42)
It doesn’t mean they were the only ones sharing the Good News…because those they had discipled were also influencing their friends and family daily with what had happened in their lives because of this message and the Holy Spirit.
But the Apostles had set priorities…prayer and “the ministry of the Word.” What does this mean? They sought God’s guidance first, they approach the throne of Grace for help and they got it…they trusted God to lead and they needed to spend time with Him or they knew they were in trouble…But they also knew that 12 men and the other original follower wasn’t enough…They knew their second priority was “To make disciples, to baptize them and then teach them the words of Jesus…the ministry of the word…is the ministry of “teaching people who have decided to follow Jesus…what! He said. Jesus is the word…the Logos.
I know what I know about Jesus, even to this day, because of them…because of their Holy Spirit influenced writing: “The Apostle’s Doctrine.” So if you asked me my priority at Gardenside today…Pray, Preach, and Prepare Disciples.
Because, individuals that have chosen to leave their old life, to die to self and are filled with the Spirit of Jesus, want to go the places their servant King went…and love the people their Servant King loved. You don’t have to beg them…it’s within them…it’s easily identifiable. They are full of the Spirit who gives them the wisdom they need…and leaders will:
II. TURN THE RESPONSIBILITY OVER TO THEM
We’ve been working on job descriptions and opening our hearts to God’s leading in our children’s and student ministry positions. One of the job descriptions we looked at included this statement under Initiative: “If you need someone to light a fire under you to get you moving or you’re the type of person who wants to be told what to do, please don’t apply.