“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a necessary part of it. And God has placed in the church first of all apostles,second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.” – 1st Corinthians 12:27-28
I know very little about how God works. But there is one thing that I know for sure. Without a doubt, each believer has been blessed with at least one spiritual gift to be used in the advancement of the kingdom. He promised us the manifestation of the Holy Spirit, and I have been a witness to this truth in every believer I have ever encountered.
Imagine! God has gifted you in a very specific way. You are unique and designed to fulfill a certain purpose within His church. When we begin to truly seek out our identity in Christ, this is one of the fundamental pieces of our puzzle. We are a necessary part of the body of Christ.
I don’t know about you, but the implications of that truth somewhat overwhelm me. When I realized that God created me with a specific purpose, I was both awed that I was so significant, and scared that I wouldn’t be able to live up to His expectations. That seemed like a lot of pressure.
But I have learned that it is not. In fact, it is just the opposite. When serving within the realm of my true giftedness, I have great joy. I don’t get tired. I can feel the presence of God within me. It is a wonderful way to live. And when I accept the things I am not, it is even better. I have stopped giving myself a hard times for the traits I don’t possess.
Our staff at Liberty Crossings is a living example of God’s design at work. In the words of a team building consultant, “we are the most well – balanced team she had ever encountered.” How do you think that happened? But it is true. We went through some pretty extensive testing a couple of years ago, and this is what we found:
- Wade – the visionary
- Jim – the administrator (aka “the velvet hammer”)
- Steve – the artist
- Laura – the lover
- Lynn – the warm welcome
- Sharon – the listener (and retainer of all church facts)
- Sandy – the gentle spirit
- Lana – the fire starter (that is truly the label given to me) aka – the hamster on the wheel
Once I realized where I fit, I was able to embrace the gifts I had as something necessary for the whole. It didn’t bother me so much any more that I wasn’t “a warm and fuzzy.” If you look at our team, we have plenty of those. It is a very freeing thing to realize you don’t have to be all things; just the one thing God made you to be.
Some may say of course that is how a church staff should be. But I would challenge that statement. Instead, I believe this is how the ENTIRE CHURCH is.
And you are a part of it. You are necessary and valued. The church is not complete without you.
I invite us all to spend some time praying about and seeking affirmation of our gifts. I am including below a link to a website that contains a quick (10 minute) free survey to help in determining what our gifts might be. When I took it, it proved to be relatively accurate.
As well, we offer a six-weeks course in determining, not only our gifts, but also our personality styles and ministry passions. If you are interested in attending, please let me know so we can schedule one for you. This is one of my most favorite things to do.
You made each one of us wonderfully unique. We are handcrafted to fulfill the purposes You have for us. Help us to embrace our gifts and to feel complete in them. Help us to see where we fit in Your church and how to go about connecting with those ministries. Above all, teach us how to live for Your glory and Your honor each day, regardless of our activities.
In Jesus’ name we pray,