So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us.
You are a gifted child. God has equipped you in a special way for a special purpose. And you are to discover that gift (you've got at least one), develop it, and deploy it for the glory of our Lord.
1 Corinthians 12:1-31 and Romans 12:1-13 are the main passages in the Word of God on spiritual gifts. I encourage you to take some time to study these to help you learn more about the spiritual gifts.
The Description of the Gifts
You may have talent and thought it was a gift — and in a way it is. All talents are given by God. But talents are not unique to the saved — unsaved people have talents, as well. Spiritual gifts, though, are supernatural, grace gifts — not earned or learned.
Some people also confuse the gifts of the Spirit with the fruit of the Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22 (love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance) is to be manifested in every believer. The gifts, on the other hand, are uniquely distributed as God sees fit for the building up of His Kingdom.
The Diversity of the Gifts
1 Corinthians 12:4 tells us that there are "diversities of gifts." God has given His children a variety of gifts, "but the same Spirit." There are also different administrations and operations of these gifts.
In the Body of Christ we exhibit unity in diversity. And what is unity? It is not unison. Have you ever heard a choir? Then, you know that they sing different parts. That's what makes it beautiful. God doesn't want us all to be alike. God has made each of us different. When we come together in one Spirit, our work is a harmonious symphony of loving service to our King!
The Distribution of the Gifts
The gifts are distributed by the Holy Spirit (read 1 Corinthians 12:8-11). You don't decide which one of the gifts you would like. He sovereignly chooses the gift for you. And, there's no need for you to ask God for a spiritual gift.
When the Holy Spirit entered your life and placed you into the Body of Christ, He didn't come in empty-handed; He came in with a gift. All you need to do is discover the gift and develop the gift that God has already given you. 1 Peter 4:10 says, "As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God."
The Design of the Gifts
What is God's design for your spiritual gift? 1 Corinthians 12:7 says: "But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal." Many people think their spiritual gift is for their enjoyment. But, it is not for your enjoyment; it is for your employment. If I have a gift, it's going to bless you. If you have a gift, it's going to bless me. Together, we're going to bless each other. The Phillips translation of verse 7 says, "Each man is given his gift by the Spirit that he may use it for the common good."
The Discovery of the Gifts
The first step in discovering your spiritual gift is to present yourself to God (see Romans 12:1). Once you've done that, spend some time in God's Word. Day after day, He will transform you more and more into His likeness, then you can realize your gift in Christ.
Next, I suggest you spend time serving others. You see, the Body of Christ affirms each other and helps surface our gifts. May God bless you in all your endeavors as you step out in faith to use your spiritual gift for His glory.
If you'd like to know more about discovering your spiritual gift, LWF has put together a helpful guidebook. You may also log on to our site at www.lwf.org, navigate to our bookstore under Online Resources, and search for K143, "Unwrapping Your Spiritual Gift."
When we come to Him in repentance and faith, we are empowered-and expected-to live the Christian life not by trying, but by trusting. Faith is not only how we receive salvation, it is how we walk, day by day, in grace. Only by faith can we extend forgiveness to others, share God's truth, and leave a godly legacy. As the tapestry of your life unfolds, may you begin to see the wonders of living each day, moment by moment, a life of faith and forgiveness.