TAKING THE LEAD
In 1 Timothy 5:17 Paul speaks of those who take the lead well. This is to take the lead as a shepherd leads a flock. In the church life there is some need for administration, for example, to make decisions concerning the times and days of the meetings and for other practical arrangements. For this, there is the need for elders who do a good job at taking the lead. Once the elders have taken the lead in a certain matter, perhaps in cleaning the meeting hall, they should step aside and oversee the work of others. This is necessary for the proper church life.
First Timothy 5:17 implies that some elders are better at taking the lead and that others are better at teaching. This verse says that the elders who rule well should be “counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in word and teaching.” Among the elders, some excel in taking the lead, and others, in teaching.
Many of us need to take up the burden to be co-shepherds and co-teachers with the elders. Then the church will bear a strong testimony to the whole universe. If we forget about leadership and concentrate on shepherding, the Lord will honor what we do.
ONLY FOR THE LORD’S RECOVERY
We are not here for ourselves, but for the Lord’s recovery. We do not want to corrupt the recovery by acting according to our natural feeling or natural concept. We want to see the church built up in a pure way. For this, we need the heart to devote our very being to shepherding the saints.
I can testify that my heart is solely for the Lord’s recovery. Only the recovery can make me happy. But anything that damages the recovery grieves me deeply. We all must set a watch against the Devil, the flesh, and the subtle self. Because we can be damaged at any time, we need to be watchful. I expect that you all will remain in the Lord’s recovery and that we shall see one another in glory in the coming kingdom. In order to be in the Lord’s glory and in His kingdom, we all must take grace and not repeat the damage caused by Christianity. Because we love Christ and the church, we should take Christ as our practical life and the church life as our practical living. Anything that damages the recovery we must gladly give up. In the Lord’s recovery we are absolute for Christ and the church.
(All Ages for the Lord's Testimony, Chapter 4, by Witness Lee)