Are you a position seeker? Are you a person who feels that they should be recognised in a certain position in the church? What is your reason for this? Is it so that you can get status and be deemed to have been a success? Is it because you feel once you have a status you will be able to fulfill your ministry?
The Lord faced this situation among his disciples.
A dispute also arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest. Jesus said to them, ‘The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. You are those who have stood by me in my trials. And I confer on you a kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me, so that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel (Luke 22:24-29).
The call that God places upon us is to be those who serve. This is at the heart of what Christian discipleship is. We are called to serve God and serve others. Our model is our Master who came not to seize a position, but to serve As he says in the passage just quoted, I am among you as one who serves (Luke 22:27b).
If we are those who are seeking recognition or being placed in a certain position, we have departed down a dangerous road. It is a road not ridden by our Saviour.
So what do we say to those who want a position? We say get on and serve. If you have a calling to certain work; get on with it. if you have an inclination to certain service, just get on with it. Get on and serve. We are never called to wait around to get recognition and then we do. Rather we do and then we get recognition. This is the implication of the “Laying on of hands” principle. you are recognizing those already performing the ministry.
What we are saying is that recognition has its place. Deacons, evangelists and elders (among others) need to be recognized in the church, but those who are recognized are only the ones who are already doing the serving.
So don’t just stand there waiting to be anointed to whatever position, get on and do something and then see what happens.
(Originally published at Venabling on 2nd December 2013).