Churches these days are much more complicated than they were in the first century. We now have necessary overhead and need certain organizational plans in place to keep things running smoothly. We have buildings and classes and staff and evangelize by inviting people to church.
In the first century there wasn’t such a need for all this overhead. The apostles were spreading the word. Their disciples were spreading the word. The churches met daily in homes and as a collective on Sundays in whatever venue they could find. Yet they still had need for certain administrative organization.
In Acts 6 we see the apostles teaching and preaching and praying, yet they were being distracted by the needs of the church that weren’t necessarily spiritual needs. These needs were still important, but they weren’t the purpose of the apostles, so they had the disciples choose seven men from among them to be in charge of this ministry.
Do you remember what the ministry was? It was making sure the daily distribution of food was taken care of effectively and fairly. In the process of learning to love one another they realized they needed to organize some things in order to make sure that they loved everyone equally.
This is very similar to what we are doing here in Aztec. We have many things that need to get done due to the structure of our congregation. We need to do outreach. We need to educate people in the word as they grow in being disciples. We need to take care of the building and property we use to do ministry out of. We need to take care of the money that is donated and spend it wisely. We need to organize our worship services and eating times to make sure that chaos is evaded. We need to help our staff continue to grow and work effectively.
Everyone had ideas on how to get these things done, but when we all come together and talk about everything, then we end up making few decisions, and what decisions we do make take a long time to resolve. It is important for everyone to be involved – not just in making decisions but in doing the work.
Looking at the model in Acts 6, however, we have prayerfully decided to choose 6 men who will be designated as ministry leaders for the congregation. They will chair six committees: outreach (which looks to the community, to visitors, and to benevolence), worship/fellowship (which looks to the times we are together), building and grounds (takes care of daily maintenance as well as future projects), education (helps people grow in the word through providing teachers and classrooms and materials as well as events like VBS), finance (sets and maintains the budget for the church including the committees), and staff oversight (manages those hired by the church).
It is time for us as a congregation to pray.
We need to pray as we select six men to be these ministry leaders. We need to pray for men who are reliable and godly. We need to pray for men who are willing and capable. Prayer is vitally important as we choose these men, so please pray as you choose the six you think would make good ministry leaders.
We need to pray as we decide which committee to be involved with. There are a lot of ways to be involved in the church, and you may find yourself needed in more than one committee. So pray, and commit to being a part of a committee where you can help shape the future of our congregation.
This is a great time of transition in the church. God is growing us spiritually as well as numerically, and in order to keep up with the growth and in order to make decisions more effectively and biblically we are changing the decision making processes of the church. Pray for the church as she stretches and grows that she may be a beacon of hope and life in this community.
The deadline for turning in your selection is November 3. You can turn in your names in the camouflage box in the foyer. Johnathan will be functioning with the ministry leaders as a seventh vote when needed, so he will be involved but not one of the six men. Remember, these are NOT elders and necessarily will not be functioning as thus. They will be dealing with administrative, deacon-like duties. So please choose men accordingly. God bless you and this church as we select these six men.