God And My Emotions: Devotions From Time Of Grace

Humble and ambitious?

Can you be ambitious in church life, especially in making career plans? The first and quickest answer is no, of course not. Ambition belongs in the business world. The church world prizes humility. You should be on your knees, confessing your unworthiness and averting your eyes. Wait around for someone higher up to notice you and ask you to do something.

Actually not. The truth is, God doesn’t mind if believers with talents and ambition aspire to leadership. He even encourages it: “Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being an overseer, he desires a noble task. Now the overseer must be above reproach” (1 Timothy 3:1,2). The Greek word for "overseer" could also be translated "bishop." It means someone who exercises a supervisory role in carrying out the mission of the church.

You better be ready. The rest of 1 Timothy chapter 3 outlines the lofty standards and requirements in Christian character and ability that the church should insist on in its leaders. But Paul’s basic message is one of encouragement for younger people to dream big, be ambitious for the kingdom, and seek to use gifts that God himself gave. The church is always desperately in need of good leaders, and you may be one of God’s answers. Go for it! But still be humble.