Community: Opportunity

Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution. And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables. Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” And what they said pleased the whole gathering, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch. These they set before the apostles, and they prayed and laid their hands on them.

And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.”

Acts 6:1-7

When I read these verses this morning my first thought was “ugh! Why didn’t the twelve just go and do it themselves?” Anyone else with me on that one?

If you’ve worked or served in a church or a non-profit, you understand that feeling of “I have to do everything”. One time I was the only person on staff other than the pastors which meant I was the janitor, the set-up crew, the receptionist, the children’s director, the media lead, and the accountant. I understand the feeling of needing to do everything. Yet that’s not what the disciples did – they were wiser than that.

They understood their place, their role, and their calling. They knew who they were.

Within the context of community we have an opportunity to learn our identities {tweet this}.

I can’t tell you how many things I’ve learned about myself simply because I allowed myself to be known by people close to me. More than just understanding things like skills and abilities, I’ve learned, because of their encouragement, who I am in Christ. They’ve spurred me on and encouraged me to seek his face and, as I’ve done that, I’ve found who I truly am.

We’ll continue talking tomorrow about this particular passage, but today I want you to think about your identity. Who are you? What skills and strengths and abilities do you have? What were you put on this earth to do? And, most importantly, who are you in Christ? If you’re unsure or completely sure, I would encourage you to talk about these things with your community – what a precious opportunity to grow!

Download Community: You’re Welcome at the Table, a free PDF, at


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