1 Timothy 3 has long been used as the measuring stick churches use to generate lists of 'qualified' individuals whose names will be permitted to stand for church leadership positions, such as elder and deacon. Indeed, as a child, I witnessed the pain that can be caused when the 'list' is applied blindly in the absence of discernment, discretion and love. My father, the principal of the local Christian school and parent of a strong-willed, active young son, once had his name called into question on the charge that he was not "One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection will all gravity." (1 Tim 3:4, KJV, in use in that congregation at the time). A crushing blow for a man devoted and gifted in pastoral and administrative leadership, eager to serve his church family with honor and integrity. The charge was dismissed by other voices, but was not kept silent.
Taking a look at Matthew Kutz's Biblical Leadership Qualifications portion of his Scriptural Leadership Framework based on 1 Timothy 3, I found myself thinking, "If you spell it all out like that, no wonder most church members, don't feel they have what it takes to be a leader!" But the list is there and it is the inspired Word of God. I am feeling very thankful for the teaching I received in Gr. 11 Hermeneutics: Interpret scripture within the context of other scripture. "Being confident of this that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Phil 1:6, NIV. And it is that promise that makes Kutz's list of corresponding Contemporary Leadership Competencies a much easier pill to swallow. It is a journey and that's OK.
Beyond the Covenant for Office Bearers, does your church have a version of Kutz's Spiritual Leadership Framework that prospective leaders are measured against? Perhaps it is a list of characteristics that your church is invested in developing in their current leaders? Are those desirable competencies communicated to the congregation? How so? How does your church move from the guidelines given in Scripture, through the nomination and voting process, to the commissioning and equipping of their leaders for the tasks to which they've been called?