Sunday, August 14, 2011

Transforming Society (6) - Deacons

In a very short time, the church had grown to about thirty households, but this is just part of the story. Something more important was going on at the same time. These households bound together by love and had become a community. Alf, Richard and Ernie had always done things together, and when other people came to the Lord, they joined them. Their strong relationships with each other drew others in.

The couples in the dwellings marked D have developed into the ministry of the deacon. The deacon is one of the most important ministries in the body of Christ, because, they channel social assistance to people in the neighbourhood who face poverty. One couple in an orange house chose to follow Jesus after they received financial help during a period of unemployment. Another deacon eventually found a new jobs for both of them. If the neighbourhood was wealthy, the deacons might channel resources to other neighbourhoods where people are poor.
Times were tough, and the government was facing a problem with sovereign debt, so was unable to pay pensions for several months. The Christians in A Street committed themselves to providing financial support to all the people in their street who depended on the pension for income. One was a Christian, but two were not one. One became a Christian. The other steadfastly rejected the gospel, but his neighbour chose to follow Jesus, after seeing how the Christians continued to provide support for someone who was hostile to their message.

No comments: