A Prayer for Today
A dilemma had developed in the early fellowship in Jerusalem. The disciples were being pulled in too many directions. The Hellenist widows were being neglected. The disciples realized that they needed to prioritize their own lives and ordain men to serve with them in the ministry to the church.
The disciples set the criteria: the men were to be of good reputation, filled with the Holy Spirit, and filled with wisdom. The disciples then concluded that they would “give themselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the Word.” This conclusion “please the whole multitude.” The church bore witness to this decision.
The disciples decided to be dedicated to prayer. They would “give themselves.” There would be a sacrifice and rendering of their time to prayer. They would be occupied in prayer and the Word.
This rendering would be continual and without interruption. Their days would be occupied with a constant conversation of praise and petition to Jesus. Then they would seek to know the Word of God and minister this Word to others.
Persecution inevitably followed this course. Suddenly the early church was a greater threat to the kingdom of darkness than it had yet realized. The newly chosen were anointed and prosperous in service and divine acts. The Word of God began to spread throughout Jerusalem and even a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith. What about the 21st century truth? Is it having the same effect on society? What about the young men of the 21st century church? Are they productive? The answer by comparison is no.
Perhaps the practices of church leadership need to be examined and compared to the disciples. What is the preoccupation of the leadership? What are they giving their time and efforts to? How is the majority of their time spent?
Consider this divine experiment: Pray for the leadership of the church, that the pastor would give himself continually to prayer and the ministry of the Word.