Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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Christ's Butler School
by Tom Goodman
July 21, 2010

Where does a butler learn to butler?  One place is in a school run by Ivor Spencer in London.  There are eighty-six lessons in Ivor Spencer's butler school, including how to present and pour wine, how to pack a suitcase so that the clothing won't get rumpled, and how to iron the morning newspaper so that it fixes the ink and won't stain the employers hands.  Students learn how to tell the difference between wild salmon and farm-raised salmon, and the proper way to open a champagne bottle so that it makes a hiss instead of a pop.  Butlers trained by Spencer have gone on to work for the Queen of England, the Duke of York, and the king of Jordan, though many are now hired by U.S. businessmen.

Students trained by Spencer can count on $40,000 a year plus room, board and a car.  Not bad.  Sorry -- I don't have the school's address!

Ivor Spencer wants his students to learn how to serve well.  When we become followers of Christ, we too are expected to learn how to serve well.  As we'll learn in this Sunday's study of Acts 6, all believers are called to service while some believers are called by their church into official positions of service.

The biblical Greek word for "service" is diakonia.  We get the English word "deacon" from that word family but, while the word diakonia and its variations appear about 100 times in the Greek New Testament, in only two or three places does it apply to deacon service.

Think about that.  In 98% of the places where you find the word diakonia and its variations, it is used to describe everyone's ministry.

This point is important so we don't get the mistaken notion that only a few are called to serve while the rest of the church can be pew potatoes.  One pastor said of his church, "My church is full of willing people:  Some are willing to work, others are willing to let them!"  That's not the kind of "willing people" Jesus called us to be!

However, though all believers are called to a life of service, we should assign some believers to specific tasks of service.  This is a balance we should maintain in our church:  Everyone serves, even as some are set aside by the church for specific positions of service.  Join us this Sunday @ 10 to find out more!


Weblog:  Check out my blog, "Get Anchored," with its Links to Your World -- interesting and informative links, posted every Tuesday.

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