“It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:11-13)
My daughter brought home a copy of a recipe that has been in my recipe box for many years. Her copy adds an extra ingredient that mine does not. It makes the finished dish a little different than my original, but it is better for the adding of the addition. If you know our family at all, you would not be surprised that it is a dessert dish.
I made the recipe with the addition, and it is baking in the oven at this writing. The extra ingredient adds a new taste to the dish, and gives it a slightly different look. But the intent is the same; a yummy sweet chewy confection that should be eaten sparingly and savored with each bite.
Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, suggests a recipe for the church that includes all types of people giving all kinds of service to the church. Just like in my recipe, the different types of leadership need to mix and swirl together forming a cohesive church that serves all the needs of the people. No one leader type is more important than the other. And yet taking out or having one less leader type is not going to cause the downfall of the church. This is just as in my recipe; not having the extra ingredient did not mean the original dish was not tasty. The extra just makes it more delicious. In the same way having many leaders contributing their skills will make the church even better.
No one dish, no matter how succulent and savory will satisfy feed all of creation. We need all types of churches with all types of leadership over a long period of time. In fact one could see we will need to “cook” and create churches until the Second Coming when the Grand Master Chef makes over creation to perfection. For now each cook stumbles over him or herself doing the best possible with the ingredients available.
May you gentle reader enjoy the faith and worship group you are a better of savoring offering created and offered up to the Divine. Selah!