People: The First Disciples
Passage: Acts 6: 6-7
Before Jesus ascended into heaven He gave the disciples the great commission saying, “go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” Soon after the disciples began to preach, perform miracles, and started to build a community (The first churches). With God’s power and the effort of the disciples the believers started to rapidly grow. In a short time over 5000 people became believers. This growth brought a challenging problem the disciples needed to solve. The problem can be found in Acts 6:
But as the believersrapidly multiplied, there were rumblings of discontent. The Greek-speaking believers complained about the Hebrew-speaking believers, saying that their widows were being discriminated against in the daily distribution of food.
So the Twelve called a meeting of all the believers. They said, “We apostles should spend our time teaching the word of God, not running a food program. And so, brothers, select seven men who are well respected and are full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will give them this responsibility. Then we apostles can spend our time in prayer and teaching the word.”
Everyone liked this idea, and they chose the following: Stephen (a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit), Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas of Antioch (an earlier convert to the Jewish faith). These seven were presented to the apostles, who prayed for them as they laid their hands on them.
So God’s message continued to spread. The number of believers greatly increased in Jerusalem, and many of the Jewish priests were converted, too.
Below are some insights we can gain from this passage to better help us lead and delegate:
It’s essential for Leaders to delegate
To be an effective Christian leader then you need to know and focus on your core responsibilities. This happens when you stay in the areas you have been called or assigned to be in. This is why delegating is so important. It allows you to place qualified people in roles you are not called in or should not be doing. The disciples understood they were called to preach and teach. They knew if they started to participate in other areas they would lose focus on what God called them to do.
2 reasons why a leader does not delegate
A leader might not delegate for several reasons. I have found 2 main reasons why leaders resist or don’t delegate responsibilities to other people:
The leader fears that if they delegate a sub-division or ministry then it has the potential to fail or become ineffective, without them in the mix. So the leader stays overly involved in every area or a certain area outside of main responsibility’s. This causes the leader to lose focus on the main areas because they are trying to be a part of all the different divisions or ministries. It’s important to remember that no matter the size of the church or business a leader needs to delegate. To avoid the fear of delegating then make it a point to find and equip trustworthy people you can delegate responsibility to. It also requires trusting and replying on God.
A prideful person has a false perspective of themselves, they think they are more highly and important than they actually are. A few things can happen when it comes to delegating and a leader having pride.
First, they think they can do everything so they start doing everything. They spread themselves out and start to become ineffective in the areas of their main responsibilities.
Second, they don’t place gifted and talented people in places of responsibility because they fear losing power and the “spot light.”
Third, the prideful leader becomes the cap to the people and organization. Instead of growth the organization sees decline or becomes stagnate.
So they avoid delegating to others.
The People Leaders Should Delegate to
When delegating it’s essential to find and then place the right people in places of responsibility. It requires matching the person’s experiences, character, and background with the area of responsibility. A leader must be careful not to give a high level of responsibility to a person who has not perversely shown or does not embody someone who can handle it.
The disciples found people who where, “respected and full of the Spirit and wisdom.” 1 Timothy 3: 2-12 lists characteristics and quality’s a person should have in order to gain any level of responsibility. These are some foundational areas to consider when choosing someone for a leadership or area of responsibility.
The Results of Delegating
When a leader finds and then delegate’s responsibility’s to others then great things start to happen. Look at the results of the disciples delegating, “So God’s message continued to spread. The number of believers greatly increased in Jerusalem, and many of the Jewish priests were converted, too.” When a leader delegates they have a greater chance of seeing growth and better results.
Question: How important do you think delegating is to a leader?