Yesterday I shared how constantly playing the comparison game causes me to feel dissatisfied and insignificant. I love what Anna said in the comments: “comparison robs us of joy and the ability to fully follow the path God laid out for us.”
How do we combat these feelings of discouragement and just enjoy being ourselves? Looking at the gifts God gave us helps us to live purposefully, be more content and stop comparing ourselves to others.
“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 12:4
In Scripture, “gifts” are the talents and abilities that we have been given for use in the church and in the world. Notice the verse also says that the Holy Spirit is the giver of the gifts, giving as He wills and for the benefit of all.
There are spiritual and practical gifts mentioned in the Bible. The ones I found in 1 Corinthians 12 and Romans 12 are:
- faith (this refers to public praise and worship of God, not “saving faith” which all believers have)
- healing and miracles
- distinguishing spirits
- interpretation of tongues
- being a giver
- exhortation (encouragement)
- showing mercy
- practicing hospitality
None of these gifts are “better” than another, in fact, 1 Corinthians 12:12 goes on to say, “For even as the body is one and yet has many members, and all the members of the body, though they are many, are one body, so also is Christ.”
I love this verse because it tells us that each gift is precious to God and is used to encourage, unite and strengthen others! We are blessed with unique gifts of our very own! And instead of looking at what we are not, we can look at what we are, as a child of God, wife, mom, friend and more.
Are you creative and artistic? Practical and organized? Do you have a strong sense of discernment? Do you enjoy bringing people into your home? Whatever gifts you have, don’t be afraid to nurture and practice them, especially with your own family.
Maybe you’re not sure in what areas you are gifted. Most of us have a combination of some of the gifts mentioned throughout Scripture. If you’re wondering, spend some time in prayer about it and then try asking yourself these questions:
- What types of activities do I find myself naturally drawn to? (singing in church, visiting nursing home residents, serving meals, studying books and commentaries, etc)
- What opportunities make me excited? (going on a missions trip, speaking at a conference, teaching a class, leading a prayer group, etc)
- What do I like to talk about and brainstorm about with others? (community involvement, serving others, saving and giving, etc.)
- What topics am I passionate about? (evangelism, hospitality, advocacy, prophecy, healing and health, etc)
Ask a trusted friend what they think your passions and gifts are. You may be pleasantly surprised by what they say! If you want, you can take a “spiritual gifts” survey (but please do so with discernment).
Whatever your gifts, trust that they are the best gifts for you!
Tomorrow I’m going to talk about some practical ways that we can use our gifts in service and ministry. Please join me!