Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Man Of Sorrows Wondrous Name"1 (Lyrics)
We all like to receive gifts — on birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas, and weddings. Sometimes we get gifts on Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Father's Day, or Easter. When someone gives us a really thoughtful and meaningful gift, we may cherish it for a long time.
According to the Bible, each believer has received at least one gift (usually two or three) from God by the Holy Spirit — a spiritual gift, a God-given ability to serve God and others. Spiritual gifts are necessary in every church so that we can better serve one another and the world around us, and bring glory to God. They are not for only a few of us but for all of us.
Ephesians 4:12 – Why is it that he gives us these special abilities to do certain things best? It is that God's people will be equipped to do better work for him, building up the Church, the body of Christ, to a position of strength and maturity. (TLB)
We have just finished a Bible study on spiritual gifts at our church. It was an exciting opportunity to discover what our gifts were as well as to encourage one another to use them to serve God, His church, and our world.
Do you know what your spiritual gifts are? Are you using them to further God's kingdom here on earth? If you don't know what your gift(s) are, I encourage you to use one of a number of gift assessment inventories available to help people discover their spiritual gifts, such as the one that our Bible study group did. Your gift may be prophecy, teaching, wisdom, knowledge, exhortation, discerning of spirits, giving, helps, mercy, pastor, missionary, evangelist, hospitality, faith, leadership, administration, miracles, healing, tongues, interpretation, voluntary poverty, intercession, service, or one or more other gifts. Often, we will discover our gifts through experience when we see that we are doing well at something.
Since no one has all of the gifts, we need each other and each other's gifts. When we are open to the leading of the Holy Spirit, we will be given the strength and the passion to be the people God created us to be and to use the gifts that God has given us. All of our needs cannot be met unless the body of Christ as a whole is using their gifts in love.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we thank You for gifting us in so many different ways so that we can serve You, our churches, and a needy world. Thank You that we each have a special role to play. Empower us by Your Holy Spirit to use our gifts in ways that will bring You glory. Help us to support and encourage each other as we use and develop our gifts in Your service and in the building up of Your church. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.