Priorities – Word and…?

Leave a comment

25/10/2013 by Chris Green

prioritiesI got it wrong again this week.  In public, which was a touch embarrassing. 
..
I was speaking to a group of pastors in training, looking at the priorities of ministry from Acts 6.  You know the story – the needy widows were being overlooked in the food pantry, so the apostles arrange for a few responsible Christians to take care of them, freeing the apostles themselves to focus on what they should properly be doing.
..
There isn’t a hint of status games here. Luke records that Peter uses the same word for the activity of the apostles (v4) and of the responsible Christians (v2): serve (the Greek word is diakonia, from which we get the word Deacon, though the title isn’t used here). It’s as though Peter says, “You deacon the pizza, and we’ll deacon the preaching.”
..
Except that he doesn’t, quite.
..
I was banging home to the students that Peter has a double focus: ministry of the Word, and prayer. And I was explaining (i.e., going off on one) about how often I hear the phrase, ‘Word ministry’, but rarely ‘Word and prayer’. Word and Spirit, yes.  Word and Sacrament, yes.  But surely, I pleaded, we should be known as people of ‘Word and prayer.
..
And then someone stuck up a hand.
..
“Chris, in Acts 6:4, Peter doesn’t say their priorities are ‘Ministry of the Word and prayer’.  He says they are ‘prayer and ministry of the Word.'”
 ..
Boom.
..
Does that mean that there’s a priority between the priorities?  Could be. But I was very struck that my instinct was still to remember the order wrong.
..
So. If you tend to miss the fact that prayer is to be one of your priorities, alongside ministry of the Word, how do you think you should be adjusting your diary?
..
And if, like me, you shift slightly awkwardly in your seat because even though we do both, we might not be as obedient as we’d like to think, the same question: how does your diary reflect the priority of the priority of prayer?

Click HERE for occasional updates from me, and you’ll receive a free e-book, ‘The Power of God’s Words.’ I won’t share your email with anyone else.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Publication of The Goldilocks Zone

Launch dayJanuary 18th, 2018
33 days to go.

Living as a Christian in the 21st century means we face constant battles to please God. That’s why I wrote ‘PURITY: Living to please God in an impure world – 15 daily readings in 1 Thessalonians.’

There’s only way to get it – by subscribing to my  email newsletter here.

Topics

God, Suffering and Joy

A conversation between me (with cancer) and Michael (with Multiple Sclerosis)

Terms and conditions

This blog does not share personal information with third parties nor do I store any information about your visit to this blog other than to analyse and optimise your content and reading experience. I am not responsible for republished content from this blog on other blogs or websites without my permission. This privacy policy is subject to change without notice.

I welcome your participation on the Ministrynutsandbolts site, and invite you to share ideas elsewhere on what you learn and read here. At the same time, I ask that you respect my intellectual property rights in the process.

You are welcome to link to my site or any specific post on my site, extract and re-post less than 200 words on any other site, provided you link back to my original post, or print my posts in any non-commercial publication (e.g., company newsletter, class syllabus, church newsletter, etc.), provided you include this copyright notice: “© 2017 Chris Green. All rights reserved. Originally published at www.ministrynutsandbolts.com.”

Please do not do the following without written consent: Re-post one of my posts in its entirety anywhere else on the Internet, use this content for commercial purposes, including selling or licensing printed or digital versions of my content, or alter, transform, or build upon this work.

If you have some use for my content that is not covered here, please contact me. If you would like me to do a guest post on your blog, email me at ministrynutsandbolts@gmail.com

Copyright does not apply to the titles of books, but transparency means I should own that the title of the blog is taken from the excellent ‘Ministry Nuts and Bolts: What They Don’t Teach Pastors in Seminary ‘ by Aubrey Malphurs (Kregel: 2nd edn. 2009)

© 2017 Chris Green