“Choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them.”
— Acts 6:3
We don’t often enjoy tension. Whether it’s in an organization, a business, a family, a friendship, or even a church, tension can really mess with things. But what if we can refocus the tension and see if it creates a new opportunity?
Things were getting a bit tense in the fast-growing group of Jesus’ followers. Feelings were hurt, some people were left out, and some of them began to complain. Another word for this is “grumbling.” If you have heard the story of God’s people wandering in the desert after being freed from Egypt, you know that it did not take long for them to start grumbling (Exodus 16).
What unfolds in this moment in Acts is an opportunity to decentralize the responsibilities of serving. The community has grown so large that it’s time to appoint leaders who can help take care of some needs that aren’t being met.
When we take time to sit in the tension, we are able to see new opportunities. It’s easy to grumble. It’s also easy to find some people to grumble with. But if we step back and look at things from another angle, we might see an opportunity to start something beautiful.
Too often in my life I have let the grumbling get in the way of what God may want to teach or reveal to me. How can we reframe what we are going through? What new thing might arise from the tension?
God, please help us break free from complaining, and let us see what new things you are trying to teach us. Amen.