Servants selected to care for poor

Date: Tuesday, June 11

ScriptureActs 6:1-7

Verse: Now during those days, when the disciples were increasing in number, the Hellenists complained against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution of food. (Acts 6:1)

Several weeks ago, I had a meeting with one of my daughter’s teachers. As we were leaving, my wife told me the teacher we had just spoken to had been a youth pastor before he became a teacher. Later that day, I wrote him an email thanking him for the meeting and encouraging him in his ministry to the kids. Maybe that sounds funny – like he left ministry when he became a math teacher. But I believe he was following his call, and ministering to middle schoolers every day in ways he never could have as a youth pastor. I’ve met others too – doctors, dentists, counselors, human resource people, cashiers, and others who see their job as so much more than a paycheck. They are fully aware they are doing just as God would have them do every day. 

I am so glad for those who understand their call to ministry as clearly as Stephen and the apostles. The apostles knew they were called to tell the story they had lived, the story of following Jesus. They had firsthand knowledge of his healings, teachings, feedings, meals with sinners, and his love for all. Yet they also knew there was work Jesus would want done in his name – namely the feeding of these widows and others who could not provide for themselves. Solving the problem with this division of labor got Stephen and the six others named in this passage, working from their strengths in new and exciting ways. Through this new way of looking at their work, the ministry was expanded and “The word of God continued to spread” (Acts 6:7).

So often we want to do everything – be everything for God. We are much better when we are working from our strengths in the ways he has gifted us. May we each use our gifts so together we might be the church God is calling us to be. 

Prayer: Show me the ways I can best serve you, O God. Amen. 

Action: Do some introspection, and ask others, what gifts of God they see in you. Explore the parts of your life where are you are living your call. 

Respond: What people have you met in non-church jobs, who know they are called to what they are doing? Answer by clicking “Leave a Comment” below. If you are receiving this via email, click the title at the top of the email to take you to the devotion webpage where you can leave a comment.

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About Joe Iovino

Christian, husband & father, Associate Pastor in Monument CO, guitar player, motorcyclist, Mets fan.
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