Daily Devotional for February 3
This job is too heavy a burden for you to handle all by yourself. —Exodus 18:18
The church in the wilderness modeled the biblical pattern of oversight. Leaders of tens, fifties, hundreds, and thousands were selected to care for the basic needs of the people and to settle their disputes. As a result, Moses had to review only the most difficult cases and policies. His primary job was to commune with God and to teach the Word. The apostles discovered this principle in the selection of deacons, which freed them to use their time “in prayer and preaching and teaching the word” (Acts 6:4). The early church not only met daily in the temple but also gathered “in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity (Acts 2:46). Apostles, deacons, and church members all helped carry the load of the growing congregation. Burned-out pastors and leaders are a testimony to the huge toll of counseling, visiting, and arbitrating required in the church today. In actuality, the pastor is not called to do all ministry, but he is “to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church” (Ephesians 4:12). Pastors, bring them in, build them up, release their gifts, and send them out. In this way, you will be able to endure as Moses did.