Let yourself become open to God and the knowledge that comes from the Word. Ask God for peace at this time.
5 Now as an elder myself and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as one who shares in the glory to be revealed, I exhort the elders among you 2 to tend the flock of God that is in your charge, exercising the oversight, not under compulsion but willingly, as God would have you do it—not for sordid gain but eagerly. 3 Do not lord it over those in your charge, but be examples to the flock. 4 And when the chief shepherd appears, you will win the crown of glory that never fades away. 5 In the same way, you who are younger must accept the authority of the elders. And all of you must clothe yourselves with humility in your dealings with one another, for
“God opposes the proud,
but gives grace to the humble.”
I started babysitting for neighbors, and families in our church, when I was 12 years old. Some babysitting jobs were a breeze: some were more like category-4 hurricanes. I think the children in one family put together a battle plan before I arrived for my first day. While I tended to a little guy who had skinned his knee (a well-executed diversion tactic?), his siblings stealthily infiltrated various rooms of the house and left behind utter destruction. The secret to “capturing the enemy” – as every successful babysitter knows – is figuring out what the kids like to do and doing it with them. Throw the football. Build a fort. Break out the glue sticks and construction paper. Become the student and let the children teach you a new skill. Children blossom when oversight is provided in a way that nurtures individuality and fosters mutual respect.
Likewise, a congregation blossoms when the leaders help members discern their gifts, offer opportunities for those gifts to be used, nurture individuality, promote community, and provide oversight in a way that fosters mutual respect.
Please, Lord, help those leading the flock to do so with humility and help those being led to accept authority with grace. God, we ask You to give us grace. Amen
Go with God!