By Kevin Guigou
We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. – Romans 12:6A NIV
Each of us is good at certain things. We’re born with certain gifts and born again with others. Then our Christian life unfolds as a journey of meshing our natural capacities with the longsuits that were planted in us with the presence of the holy spirit.
Jesus Christ was the ultimate example of every spiritual gift and ministry. He was the perfect apostle, the perfect prophet, the perfect evangelist, pastor and teacher. The Lord walked ideally in each (available) manifestation of the Spirit and fruit of the spirit.
Therefore, the Christ in each of us is imprinted with all those potential qualities and abilities. We can tap into his full set of giftings, as God wills.
We are empowered to love like Jesus loved, to believe like he believed, to heal like he healed.
More specifically, unique spiritual giftedness is given to each believer as qualities and abilities energized out of Christ’s spirit within.
Gifts draw receivers into relationship with the Giver. Having giftedness from Christ draws us to him, makes us more like him, and enables us to display his character to our world. We don’t use gifts so folks will remember us, but so they’ll remember the One who gave us those gifts. Our gifts glorify him!
A body is made up of many parts, and each of them has its own use. 5That’s how it is with us. There are many of us, but we each are part of the body of Christ, as well as part of one another. 6 God has also given each of us different gifts to use. If we can prophesy, we should do it according to the amount of faith we have. 7If we can serve others, we should serve. If we can teach, we should teach. 8If we can encourage others, we should encourage them. If we can give, we should be generous. If we are leaders, we should do our best [with diligence]. If we are good to others [merciful], we should do it cheerfully. – Romans 12:4-8 CEV
For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body… 27Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. – I Corinthians 12:12-13, 27 ESV
What makes God’s people the same and what makes them different are both by his design. Gifts that we share in common include the gift of Jesus (John 3:16), the gift of salvation (Ephesians 2:8), the gift of the holy spirit (Acts 2:38), and the gift of righteousness (Romans 3:24).
But gifts that make us different are also by the Lord’s intention. Each member of Christ’s body is uniquely crafted with a divine distinctiveness. What personal attention from the great Giver! We see his strategic diversity in the combination of abilities in each believer.
One member might be strong in giving mercy and evangelism. Another may excel in service and encouragement. And yet all this variety in giftedness is designed and interwoven by the Head of the Church, Christ Jesus. The Apostle Paul often emphasized the diversity among the giftings distributed by Christ.
Christ himself assigns equipping ministries to prepare God’s people for works of service to build his Body (Ephesians 4:7-8, 11-12). But Paul’s description of giftedness wasn’t limited to a handful of overseers. Most giftedness is spread across the whole family of God.
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, [Why?] so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ… – I Peter 4:10-11 NIV
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; 6there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. – I Corinthians 12:4-6 ESV
In a sense, anything given to us from God is a gift… something we didn’t have or couldn’t do, yet he supplied by his grace and love.
Our Father has equipped each of us with the perfect spiritual giftedness to fully live for him. Let’s glorify Him this season and utilize our best gifts!