Faithfulness to Your Calling (Acts 6:1-7)
Oct 04, 2010 by Craig Blomberg | 0 Comments
“It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God to wait on tables” (v. 2b; TNIV)
No, the apostles were not considering becoming servers in restaurants! “Waiting on tables” was an expression that denoted either the distribution of food or money to poorer individuals in the early Christian community.
Acts 6:1-6 is usually cited when Christians discuss church polity and the need for deacons or their functional equivalents to engage in ministries of practical helps, supplementing the more explicitly spiritual work of the pastors/elders. But those formal offices would all originate some years later in the first century, even though the believers who created them may have reflected on this division of labor here as an important precedent.
The key principles applicable to all Christians involve staying faithful to one’s primary calling and giftedness in serving God and his people and delegating additional responsibilities to others whose call and gifts are better suited for them.
One Christian career counseling ministry encourages people to consider themselves fortunate if they enjoy at least 60% of what their jobs require them to do. The complexity and volume of work inside and outside the church today makes a higher percentage than that unrealistic for many people. But if our satisfaction level is dramatically lower, perhaps we are mismatched. Circumstances outside our control may prevent us from changing what we must do, in which case we need to pray for God to grant us greater contentment with our current situation. But if we have the chance to change our jobs or ministries, we probably should avail ourselves of the opportunity.