What Should Deacons Do?
A question that comes up from time to time in the circles I run in (that is sort of laughable as I don’t really run in any circles) is this: What do the deacons do in your church?
This is a question I wondered for many years as a youth. It all seemed rather mysterious to me. I would hear that there was going to be a deacon’s meeting. I would see men selected and elected deacon. I would hear stories about how certain deacons were the power brokers in certain churches, maybe even in those I belonged to.
I was ordained a deacon in my former church in 2008. I went to a meeting once a quarter. What did we do? We went to a meeting once a quarter. That was it. In essence, we did nothing, other than perhaps ordain a new deacon here and there.
I’ve been my new church now for three months. We have deacons. Guess what they do?
I don’t know. I don’t care.
My focus has shifted a bit in regard to deacons. I’m not really all that concerned with what deacons do.
I’m more concerned with what deacons are.
Instead of focusing on if deacons are doing their job, I’m more focused on what deacons are being.
To put it another way, what they are becoming.
Paul lists out what I think are some bare minimum standards to Timothy. They are to be men of dignity. They are not to be double-tongued. They are not to be addicted to much wine. They are not to be fond of sordid gain. They are to hold to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. They are to be tested. They are to be above reproach. They are to be the husbands of one wife. They are to be good managers of their children and their households.
Beyond that they are to serve.
That’s a whole lot of being. Not a lot of doing. In fact, the thing that I see them doing is serving.
The being is specific. The doing, the serving? Not so much.
So, what should a deacon do? Work on himself most of all. And serve.
That’s it in a nutshell.
What do the deacons do in your church? What do you think they should do?