Welcome Home – 40 Day Fast Devotion #20
Said the Branch to the Flower…
David Breen – General Manager of Training, Discovery Community Care
“Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them…”
Said the branch to the flower ‘I am not as important as you for I am only an ugly branch, but you are a flower that is full of colour and beauty.’ Ah’, said the flower, ‘but without you the world would not know the delight of my aroma and splendor, for you carry me.’
It is so easy to think the role we play in God’s Kingdom is not important because it is not seen or highly visible. However, you can be a café waiter and be filled with the Holy Spirit and it will have an effect on church growth!
Finding and allocating Spirit filled and gifted servants to ministry areas enables the church leaders to do the job to which Jesus called them – to pray and preach, which leads to the growth of the church. Jesus calls some to pray and preach the Word – others are anointed to serve tables, deal with administration tasks or offer hospitality – the end result is the church grows.
As in the case in our passage today, the church today still needs Spirit filled people to preach the word of God and to serve behind the scenes to meet people’s needs – both are essential for the life of the church. If Stephen and the team of seven had not served behind the scenes – had not stepped up to the task of serving the widows (if they had said, ‘What a pathetic job – who wants to take meals to widowed women’) – then the church would not have grown.
Are you surprised as I am that it took Spirit filled people to do this job? It seems like a job anyone could do but this is not the point of the story. The fact that waiters who served widows were filled with the Holy Spirit was outrageous! It is not just the preachers, apostles, prophets and leaders who get the Spirit’s power; its all of us! That means any of us – plumbers, builders, the disabled who can’t work, cleaners, cooks, kids at school, Uni students, the unemployed – all can be filled with faith and the Holy Spirit. He will fill any who are willing and the result will be church growth.