A pastor was supervising four congregations. He planned to appoint few leaders in each congregation as Elders. In a village congregation there were two potential candidates. One was little educated and was working in a grocery shop in a nearby town. Another was working in the village with a farmer who had lot of lands and warehouses. The pastor decided to discreetly visit their bosses and enquire about them. In the town, the grocery shop owner had a list of complaints: not punctual, lazy, try to while away time, not courteous with customers…etc. The farmer said that the worker was punctual, hardworking, humble and honest. No wonder, pastor appointed him as elder though he was not much educated as the other. Paul writes about qualification of leaders of the local church. A person who aspires for leadership in the church should have impeccable reputation in his workplace and neighbourhood. (I Timothy 3:7)
Sadly, the leadership positions are decided by the performance within four church walls. There are many who could wonderfully imitate Christian culture of showing spirituality. In the worship services they could be involved in Reading Scripture or being part of worship team or ushers. Participation and piety among the Christian community is not the criteria for leadership in the church. Paul insists the reputation factor outside the church in workplace and neighbourhood is important. This aspect has been neglected so there are bad testimonies in the society, who misrepresent Lord Jesus Christ.
When reputation standards are not demanded by the local church, members of the congregation tend to be lackadaisical in their approach to moral values and ethics in work place. Also, when leadership roles are given to such people, in a way the church approves what is not right or evil and give unwarranted credibility to those who do not deserve honour.
True spirituality is expressed in everyday life in the society. If not, it is hypocritical religiosity, without truth or righteousness in family and social life.
Do I reveal Christ likeness in my day-to-day life?