[From January 15, 2016]
"So with yourselves; since you are eager for spiritual gifts, strive to excel in them for building up the church."
(1 Corinthians 14:12)
I was watching a short video on Facebook yesterday. Steve Harvey was talking to the audience after filming an episode of FAMILY FEUD. He was encouraging them to find whatever "gift" God has blessed them with ("everyone has been given something they excel in by God!"), and dare to "jump." Dare to be bold, take a risk, and use that gift to the fullest. Don't sit on it.
The apostle Paul, in his letter to the church in Corinth, is talking about God's giftings, too. "Pursue love and strive for the spiritual gifts," he writes in 14:1. He then lays out the difference between speaking in tongues (a "just you and God" moment) and prophesy (bringing an encouraging word to others). Midway through the chapter he calls them to use their gifts "for building up the church."
We're all good at something. It may not be a "traditional" gift that most think about in regards to church (preaching, teaching, serving, etc.). But what a focus: do whatever you do well, in order to build up others (ie. the church). How can I help my congregation re-envision how they can be a blessing to others in the unique ways God has wired them? That's my call as a pastor. Lord, help me do this!