“But as the believers rapidly multiplied, there were rumblings of discontent. The Greek-speaking believers complained about the Hebrew-speaking believers, saying that their widows were being discriminated against in daily distribution of food.
So, the Twelve called a meeting of all the believers. They said, “We apostles should spend our time teaching the words of God, not running a food program. And so, brothers, select seven men who are well respected and are full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will give them the responsibility. Then we apostles can spend our time in prayer and teaching the word” Acts 6: 1-4
At first glance it might appear that the apostles didn’t find the food program important and they can’t be bothered, but in reality they just realized they couldn’t do it all. They realized they were called to do a certain job and that wasn’t it so, they delegated. Brilliant, right?! In order for a church to run the way God intended it to run we all have to realize that each of us has a function. It is perfectly acceptable to say, no. We have to know our strengths and weaknesses to know where to plug in. That is not to say that we shy away from things that make us uncomfortable. If we are able physically able to help, then we should. Churches can’t function with a few people doing it all. The early church knew that and took measures to fix their problem so that they could be more efficient in spreading the Good News while at the same time feed and love God’s people.
I read a book a couple of years back by Lysa Terkeurst entitled The Best Yes. It essentially tells us this same concept. No is okay. If you can’t give your all to a task for the glory of God then allow someone else to do that task and to be used for God’s glory. If I am trying to plug in everywhere and do it all, I am not allowing others to work for God’s glory. Probably someone who is much more equipped for the task I am. It is actually biblical. We see this in the first church. They trusted other believers to help in a task they were not able to follow through with. Our churches today have to do the same and work together.
May I add that our church does feeding people really, really well? If you want to see how our church models the first church, just stop by the office any given day and see our bag lunch program. Or come to our Saturday Soup Kitchen and see us feeding his people. If you want to experience Jesus, come to the Soup Kitchen. He is there with the least of these. I feel so privileged to be a part of a church that has accepted the invitation with joyful hearts to be God’s hands and feet each and every day.
Gracious God, I pray that I remember that “no” is an acceptable answer. Help me to remember that my “no” might mean opening the door for someone else to be Your hands and feet. I pray for wisdom when looking where to plug in to Your church and help Your people so that we can effectively spread the Good News as well as feeding and love Your people. Thank You for loving us even when we can’t get all this right. Your grace is sufficient. May we love Your people with half of the fierceness that You have loved us. In Jesus Name, Amen.