Individual Gifts

“6 Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; 7 if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; 8 the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.”

Romans 12:6-8

What gifts do you have? Think about that for a moment. And if you can’t think of anything right now, then that is your assignment for the month. I guarantee that everyone has special gifts or talents. But don’t take my word for it. Paul says this in his letter to the Romans: “Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us…”

You see, far too often we focus on the gifts that others have out of jealousy or envy. We have thoughts like “they are so good at xyz, they never have to practice,” or “it must be nice to have such a useful talent.”

Sometimes it isn’t jealousy or envy though. Sometimes we notice the gifts of others and find ourselves in a place of self-loathing or depravity. “I wish I was as talented as him/her,” “I could never be as skilled as them,” “I don’t have any talents, gifts, or skills that could be glorifying or helpful to others.”

Hear this again: “Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us…” then Paul finishes the clause with, “let us use them.”

When we get caught up in seeing what others have and what we don’t have, we get stuck in a place of disappointment, perhaps even despair. It is hard for us to see what God has given to us, gifts, talents, or otherwise. God has given each of us a different set of gifts. We don’t always recognize them as gifts, but they are gifts nevertheless. And they are to be used!

You don’t have to be in the spotlight to have gifts that ought to be used. You don’t have to be a star athlete, a professional musician, or a public speaker. You have been given gifts according to the grace God has given you, use them! If you do not know what your gift is, take a few days – the month – and do some self-reflection. Pay attention to how it is that you are called to serve others or take care of this place God has given us to call home. Pay attention to what friends and family might ask for help with. Better yet, ask them, and be ready to respond in kind with an affirmation of a gift that they might have.

I promise you this: as God has called you His very own, so too has He given you a set of gifts that are for you to use. God has called you for a reason. Even if you don’t know what that reason is or what gifts He may have imparted on you, know that according to the measure of faith God has assigned, and by His grace, you are called to serve as one of His Chosen People.

This is most certainly true.

Pastor Maxwell Whitehead

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Our Saviors Church
PO Box 98
Viborg SD 57070