1 In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenistic Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. 2 So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. 3 Brothers and sisters, 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 4 and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.”
5 This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. 6 They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.
7 So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.
As we are introduced to a disciple named Philip, we revisit a passage of scripture we read a few weeks ago. We find Philip in the company of a few good men, tasked with serving the physical needs of the early church. Their qualifications for the job included being men full of the Spirit and wisdom.
Scripture doesn’t tell if they had any experience meeting the physical needs of the people they were tasked with serving. The only thing we can be certain of is that they lived in such a way that others could see the evidence of the Holy Spirit at work in their lives. It wasn’t about their individual skill sets. These men allowed the Spirit to direct their actions and it was clear they were the right ones for the job.
How often do we get caught up in feeling unqualified or ill-equipped to meet a need we see? How often do these feelings cause us to shy away from stepping into an opportunity to serve? What if what is truly needed from each of us – more than a perfect skill set to get the job done – is an eagerness and willingness to allow the Holy Spirit to direct our actions?
Is there something you can do today to open yourself up to the Holy Spirit’s direction? Do you need to pray before you walk into work? Do you need to ask God to be present in a conversation you need to have?
God’s power shows up when we allow Him to lead the way. Let us be people seeking to allow the Holy Spirit to take the lead, boldly stepping in to serve in ways we never imagined, strengthened by His perfect wisdom and power.