Last month my husband preached on spiritual gifts. “What gift do you think you have?” I whispered to my seven year, whose head was in my lap. I leaned my ear close to his mouth to hear him whisper back, “I have all the spiritual gifts, Mommy. I’m like a spiritual gifts ninja.”
I didn’t whisper back, “Well, actually, according to the spiritual gifts survey I just took in Sunday school, you should only have one, maybe two, spiritual gifts.” I just smiled a nodded.
The truth is, we each have all the spiritual gifts because the Spirit Himself lives in us. We most strongly exhibit one or two of the gifts for the purpose of building up the church, but just because one of the gifts isn’t your gift, doesn’t mean you get a pass and don’t have to use that gift at all.
Just because you don’t think you have the spiritual gift of giving doesn’t mean you don’t have to give. “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Corinthians 9:6-8)
Just because you scored the lowest in the “encouragement” category doesn’t mean you don’t need to encourage others. “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works . . .” (Hebrews 10:24)
And just because no one has praised your gift of teaching does not mean you aren’t a teacher. “Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.” (Titus 2:3-5)
My spiritual gifts are easy for me to exhibit. I love teaching my Sunday school class. It doesn’t feel like work. I also have the gift of faith. It is natural for me to believe God has a plan for my family and that His plan will work out for our good.
The areas I score low on are the areas I beg the Spirit to strengthen in me. The areas I need much more of Him. It is much harder for me to show mercy. I forget to live like an evangelist. I’d rather read a book alone in my room than invite people over and show hospitality.
But God calls me outside my comfort zone. He calls me to obedience And what He calls me to do, He empowers me to do. Like Moses who had Aaron speak when he couldn’t, we have the Spirit who works through our weaknesses.
Know your spiritual gifts and use them to bring glory to God. But also know your spiritual weaknesses and use them to bring glory to God as well.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Corinthians 12:8-10)