Following up on a series we are doing (find that here), I want to share with you a couple thoughts about spiritual gifts.
1.) The Apostle Paul almost assumed that Christians would know their spiritual gifts.
Because of this assumption he spent more time convincing us of the purpose of spiritual gifts. He assaulted the heart attitudes that cause us to think wrongly about them. Paul builds throughout his letters to the Corinthians and the church at Ephesus that gifts are about love, community and mission.
2.)The reason the early churches knew their spiritual gifts was because community, discipleship and mission flourished in the 1st century church.
The early church was a community of missionaries that at it’s center was the gospel creating transformation, growth and discipleship. The first century church standing in the historical wake of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ found themselves squarely connected to the story of God. At one point Paul said “there were 500 people that were around when Jesus was walking around after he was raised from the dead go ask them.” (1 Cor. 15:6) They had a deep connection to the gospel and had joined God’s mission. Gifts were worked out in the context of community while on mission with these early disciples and witnesses.
The same should be true for us today. Despite the fact we are separated by so many years in history from the work of Christ we must join in the same way to God’s mission. Those early witnesses made other disciples that in turn made others until that long chain of disciples reached our generation.We have to work harder to see that connection but it exists by the grace of God and power of the Holy Spirit. God worked through men and women in every generation to bring people to faith. He worked through diverse gifts with all different kinds of different mixtures of gifts. These men and women worked out their gifts as they were raised up into maturity as God used them to do the same. Generation after generation Christians in community on God’s mission have worked out how they are called and gifted by God. Will you? Don’t let this question graze you and think to yourself “I have heard about spiritual gifts before.” The perfecter of our faith longs and desires to awaken our hearts to know Him more and to discover who we are in greater ways. Don’t let this season be just another spiritual gift study. Let the awesome gospel penetrate us more deeply than ever before and remove the blinders of normalcy. Awake my soul! Psalm 57:8
Do you know how God has made you? Pray with me this week that God would show you and awaken us to the gifts He has given the body.
image taken from Wikipedia