Today’s Reading Acts 6
And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch: (Acts 6:5 KJV)
What would it look like if you were willing to do the tasks that others did not want to do? What could happen if you were willing to step aside and let someone else have the spotlight? “When the one you are serving is more important than the way you are serving”, big things can happen.
How does someone go from making sure that elderly ladies have enough to eat, to performing miracles, casting out evil spirits, and healing the sick and lame? How does someone who was chosen to pass out bread become one of the greatest witnesses for Christ the world has ever seen? That is Philip’s story, and it could be yours, too. Your story might not turn out exactly like Philip’s; you probably will not be chasing down many chariots on foot, but when your willingness to serve is greater than your desire for recognition, God can do some incredible things.
Philip was introduced in Acts 6. He got two whole words in the account,
“and Philip.” That’s it. There was no grand introduction, and no fanfare; just two words. Philip saw a need in his church, and he stepped up with six other guys to help. The disciples prayed over them and turned them loose on the problem. Two chapters later he shows up again. This time he is 100 miles away and surrounded by a group of people that most church people of the day would not go anywhere near. Philip, a guy who just volunteered to pass out food, started preaching. God gave him the ability to do signs and wonders, and giant crowds of people began to put their faith in Jesus. Even the town sorcerer turned from his ways and accepted Christ as his Savior. Just then, Peter and John showed up, and Philip was willing to take a step back. Even though he was the one who had put in the time and energy to introduce all of these people to Jesus, Philip was willing to let the apostles come in and take over. Then something crazy happened. An angel showed up and told him to leave the crowds of people and to focus on just one specific person, and of course, Philip was willing. Philip led a representative of the Queen of Ethiopia to Christ while riding in his chariot, and the Gospel was spread to Africa. Then Philip vanished, literally. He shows up again in Acts 21, not as a great missionary or miracle worker, but as a father who had devoted his life to raising Godly children.
Philip’s story is amazing, but it did not start out as something amazing. It started out with a guy who was willing to serve God anyway he could. Are you willing to serve? In this four part study, we will look at what it means to be willing to serve, willing to go, willing to leave, and willing to stay. I hope you’re as excited about this as I am to study the life of Philip, and I hope it helps you as much as it’s helped me.