Read 1 Timothy 3:1-7

[1] Here is a trustworthy saying: Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task. [2] Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, [3] not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. [4] He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full respect. [5] (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) [6] He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. [7] He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap. Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

ReflectWhat are the characteristics for a leader?

Three things strike me. First, God sets high standards for the personal lives of overall church leaders, or “overseers” (1). Leaders must be godly people. Their private lives should match up to their public teaching. The messages for them are: “You can’t lead a church flock if your own life is not in great shape” and “Is who you are behind closed doors the same as who you are in front of the church?”Second, we really need to pray for these people! They need our support big time. Let’s take each characteristic in turn and pray now for them in the light of what Paul says they need to demonstrate: faithfulness in marriage (2); self-control; generosity; ability as a Bible teacher; sober clear-headedness (3); gentleness and graciousness; no great desire for wealth; good, healthy family leadership (4); maturity as a Christian (6); and non-believers’ respect (7). Third, God wouldn’t give us this model of living for church leaders if it weren’t the highest and best. So it has to be right for the rest of us too (with the exception of our all needing to be great Bible teachers).

Apply

“Just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do” (1 Pet. 1:15). Examine yourself and pray for your leaders.