That’s right. You have a gift. Tell your mom I said so!
The Bible tells us that all believers are given spiritual gifts. These are more than our talents, more than our blessings and more than our opportunities. God has given you, if you know Jesus as Savior, abilities and perspectives that you can use to make an impact in the church and beyond.
There are three primary passages that list spiritual gifts– Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12 and Ephesians 4. These gifts show us ways God can use us, how God has saved us to be a blessing to others and how we fit into God’s family which the Bible calls “the body of Christ”.
Let me suggest two things we ought to do about these gifts from God.
1. Learn Your Gifts
How has God gifted you? What perspectives and what abilities has God given you? Does God have a role for you in your church that you have never considered? What is your part in this body? These are the kinds of questions we ought to be asking ourselves.
Sometimes the answers to questions like these can surprise us. We don’t always see our own giftedness as easily as we think. Perhaps we haven’t even really considered that God has a role for us in the work He is doing in the world. But, knowing how God has gifted is half the battle in being effective in serving God. Here are some ways to discover your own giftedness.
-Read the Bible and, in particular, the lists of gifts in Romans 12, I Corinthians 12 and Ephesians 4. Ask the Lord to help you see how you fit. Seek his guidance in finding your giftedness. He might have gifted you in ways that you have never considered.
-Get counsel from godly people who know you well. Ask their opinion and solicit their feedback. Ask them to help you understand your gifts. Perhaps they can help you to see the truth about yourself.
-Get involved in service and ministry wherever God provides an open door. Often we discover more about our gifts and talents when they are put to the test in the real world of ministry.
-Consider taking a spiritual gifts test. These are all imperfect tools and I encourage you to start with the others before ever doing this. But, this might provide some basis for your own thoughts on how you best match.
2. Use Your Gifts
God did not gift you so that you have gifts. He has gifted you so that you use those gifts to make a difference and leave an impact.
I don’t want you to learn your gifts so that you have greater knowledge. I want you to learn your gifts so that you use them and, thereby, have greater effectiveness for the cause of Christ.
The Bible uses the analogy of a body when describing spiritual gifts. We are all different and have different roles just as a body has many different parts. The body needs fingers and eyes and ears to be effective. The body of Christ needs the giftedness of those all those who name Jesus as Lord. Each part matters.
One of the great needs in the church today is for each member to be involved in ministry and to use his or her unique giftedness. How much more powerful and effective would the local church be if more people were using these God given gifts as a means of glorifying God and ministering to people!
It is almost like we think of ministry like most of us think about a football game. We watch football players play. We just watch and eat junk food.
But in ministry, we are on the field. We are in the game. We join with other believers to take our role in the trenches and to do spiritual battle with the forces of darkness. We aren’t spectators; we are the participants!
So, learn how God has gifted you. And then put those gifts to good use. After all, you have a gift!