Human Resources within the Church

11The gifts he gave were that some would be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, 12to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13until all of us come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to maturity, to the measure of the full stature of Christ. 14We must no longer be children, tossed to and fro and blown about by every wind of doctrine, by people's trickery, by their craftiness in deceitful scheming. 15But speaking the truth in love, we must grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16from whom the whole body, joined and knitted together by every ligament with which it is equipped, as each part is working properly, promotes the body's growth in building itself up in love. (Ephesians 4:11-16)

In a day when the church still struggles with the "80/20 problem" (80 percent of the work is done by 20 percent of the people) and/or with unrealistic expectations placed upon the pastor, this passage is important. In this part of his letter, Paul lays out the need for effective management of human resources within the church and emphasizes that the basis for employing these resources is in the person of Christ.

As a group:

1. Read the passage.
2. What role or task is given to the pastor/teacher?
3. What role or task is given to "God's people"?

Reflect individually or in small groups:

1. What does Paul mean in verse 16 about each part doing its work?
2. What is your part on consistory and in the church? Does it match your gifts?
3. How can you support your pastor?

Pray together, as a whole consistory. Sample prayer:

Thank you, God, for choosing to use ordinary, average people like us to impact the world. Thank you for the roles of deacon, elder, and minister and for the uniqueness each brings to the table. Help us each to do our part so we might function as a whole. Amen.