Chosen To Serve

Do you remember the first time you got chosen?  Maybe it was something recreational (like being picked for a sports team). Maybe it was something familial (like being asked to do something manly by your father).  It could be that you recall the first time you are called upon to do something within church or ministry service (like being asked to lead a prayer or be an usher). 

What feelings did you experience?  Excitement?  Thankfulness?  Fear?  Anticipation?  

Speaking of being chosen to serve…take a look at the early church’s version of just that:

[1] 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. [2] 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. [3] Therefore, brothers,(2) pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. [4] But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” [5] 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. [6] These they set before the apostles, and they prayed and laid their hands on them. [7] 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 ESV)

Wow!  The church was growing and there were complaints.  Can’t imagine that.  Those called to lead recognized that they weren’t the only ones called to lead so they ‘chose’ more servant leaders.  I remember when I was first ‘chosen’.  I experienced all of those emotions and they both held a place in my heart then and still do now.  Let’s take a look at what I mean. 

Excitement - Being called to serve Holy God should begin with excitement but that excitement should continue rather than wane.  Do you get as excited to serve today as you did when first chosen?  If not, why not?  I’m not just talking about being ‘excitable’…but the deep and abiding feelings of joy that come from getting picked to do something with eternal value.  

Thankfulness - To be thankful for being ‘chosen’ is a big thing.  A thankful heart rarely has room to begrudge being used.  A sure-fire way to get burned-out is to lose the Thanksgiving factor in our service to The Lord.  

Fear - I don’t mean a paralyzing fear that hinders the work…but a cautious fear that causes us to seek God and His will so that as we serve in our ‘chosen’ roles we can do so with a confidence that we are serving well.  

Anticipation - To look ahead can be a gift if it doesn’t cause you to forget the moment you are in.  The early church was in a constant state of wonder as the dreamed about ‘what was next’.  What kept them from worrying about the ‘fear of the unknown’?  Could it be that this anticipation was so expectant and reliant upon the track record of power that God was displaying that they didn’t have time to worry.  

You are chosen.  So am I!  It is a gift that should wake us up with a bevy of holy emotions each day.