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…pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit
and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. ~ Acts 6:3 (ESV)

READING: I Timothy 3:8-13

In our first church plant music was a problem. We did our best, and God was praised, but I often cringed at the lack of quality. It wasn’t anybody’s fault. We just didn’t have the right worship leader. Then God sent us Bill. He was a gifted musician, but even more, he was good at helping others develop their musical gifts. Several of our vocalists blossomed under his mentoring. Worship became a strength rather than a liability under his leadership.

Effective church planters organize and administrate. What that often means is they find the right people for the right job. That’s the fourth principle we can see in the Acts 6 story. A crisis that threatened to split the Jerusalem church was averted and unity was strengthened because the apostles selected and deployed the right people.

Notice how they did it.They set the parameters for the job of overseeing the widows’ program: how many leaders were needed, and what their qualifications needed to be. More than anything, they had to be men of proven character.

But then they gave the task of actually selecting the men back to the congregation. This plan “pleased the whole gathering” (v. 5). The church knew this wasn’t a “rubberstamp” of the apostles’ preferences. It was an administrative partnership.

The names of the seven men show they were from the Hellenists’ group. What better way to correct the inequity than to put men from that group in charge! Crisis averted, unity restored, congregation strengthened – all by wise administration.

Lord, Grant me the wisdom to see the right people for the right jobs, and help me find them even before I need them. Amen.

Jim Carpenter