Wednesday

for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how can he take care of God’s church? (v. 5)

1 Timothy 3:1-13 Wednesday 19 September 2018

Psalm: Psalm 141:1-5

 

Background

The writer of this letter (see yesterday’s notes) to Timothy draws a direct parallel between running a church and running a household. They are both small(ish), compact communities that need leading and organising. He goes further and says that whoever leads a church must be a person who is respected within their household. This writer assumes that a church leader must be someone of integrity who behaves in the same way at home in private as they do in public in the life of the Church. The writer is stating something profound about leadership and the values, conduct and personal qualities of a church leader. A church leader is someone whose personal qualities are evident and consistent whatever the audience, whatever the context, and whatever the scenario they are dealing with. Church leaders should not be those who have a number of different personas and ways of behaving depending on who they are with, who can see or hear them, and whatever they are being asked. Anything else is hypocrisy and many people inside and outside the Church are quick to spot hypocrisy in leaders and condemn it.

A real danger for any church leader is to have lots of energy and goodwill for their public life and church members and work colleagues but only give the ‘remnant’ or ‘dregs’ of what is left of their goodness to their household at the end of the day. There is a need to be fully present to those of our households who love and support us, as well as being fully present to those in the life of the Church. These verses, whatever qualities are described as making a good church leader, make a direct connection between this and what kind of life partners and/or parent or sibling, or child we are.

 

To Ponder

  • What personal qualities do you think are essential in a good church leader?
  • What personal qualities do you value most in the people you love?
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