Gifted to Do Certain Things Well
Have you ever given your child a gift that completely captivated his or her attention? My daughter was just two years old when we gifted her with a play kitchen, complete with dishes and pretend groceries. She explored every nook and cranny from the faucet knobs to the microwave buttons. She steeped tea for all her stuffed friends and made cookies for Daddy. Once she even organized all my forks, spoons and knives in her tiny silverware drawer. Not one iota of that little kitchen went unused, giving my daughter, her friends (imaginary and real), and later her younger siblings, hours and hours of fun.
In the same way, God has given each of us unique spiritual gifts that He wants us to use to help other people. God doesn't want us to be shy with his gifts, but bold and loving and sensible (2 Timothy 1:7 MSG).
Shy. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, shy means nervous, timid, unwilling or reluctant, to avoid something through nervousness or lack of confidence.
Imagine what it would have been like if my daughter had been reluctant to use her little kitchen. What if she’d been nervous that the drawers would smash her fingers or that her daddy would make fun of her plastic cookies? Suppose she timidly left her kitchen in the corner to gather dust? It makes me sad to even consider the loss.
I've thought about that fully utilized gift of a play kitchen when considering the gifts I've been given by God. How about you? What loss would the moms around you experience if you are shy about using God’s gifts? What loss would the moms in your group experience if the coordinator was reluctant to use her gift of leadership, the mentor unwilling to use her gift of wise counsel? If one or more of the small group leaders were shy in using the gift of understanding?
According to 1 Corinthians 12:7 (NLT), “A spiritual gift is given to each of us, so we can help each other.” Paul goes even further in Romans 12:6-8 (NLT) where we read, “In His grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.”
Clearly, God doesn't want us to be shy with His gifts; we’re to use them to help others, to share God’s love with other moms—regularly, generously, responsibly, gladly!
What gifts has God given you?
Maybe you have the gift of encouragement or hospitality. Perhaps God’s given you the gift of organization or teaching. Your gift may be clear understanding—you can quickly get to the heart of any situation. Some of you have the gift of healing and some of helping. If you’re unsure what your gifts are, consider asking your pastor if the church offers a class on spiritual gifts or take the spiritual gifts assessment test at gifttest.org.
Are you using your gifts reliably?
If you lack confidence to use your gifts, you’re not alone. We all have times when we feel inadequate, uncertain, afraid, even shy. That’s why Paul is writing to Timothy, to remind him—and us—that only through the power of God’s Spirit can we reliably use God’s gifts to do God’s work well.
God doesn't want us to be shy with his gifts, but bold and loving and sensible.
Written by Shelly Radiac