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USING YOUR SPIRITUAL GIFTS

Christianity Oasis Ministry has provided you with this Using Your Spiritual Gifts study. We'll be looking into that and all aspects of the Christian Walk. This SON-derful study reveals truth as to bring forth understanding and peace within.



USING YOUR SPIRITUAL GIFTS

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SPIRITUAL GIFTS

MY BROTHER'S KEEPER

USING YOUR SPIRITUAL GIFTS

WELCOME BACK MY FRIEND

Good things come to those who wait.
I trust that you're waiting at the end of each step for the next day to continue on.
It's a great thing you're doing!

Psalms 27:14
Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.

What's the difference between a gift, and a spiritual gift? Most people think of their gifts as their talents, but most peoples' talents are really skills that they've developed on their own, through knowledge, study and practice.A spiritual gift is a natural ability that you receive from God, through the Holy Spirit. A spiritual gift is an ability which you use to glorify the Lord.

What are your spiritual gifts? That's a question that you can answer by asking yourself, What can I do, to best serve the Lord?What opportunities and talents has He given to me that I can use to glorify Him? What do I enjoy doing that truly serves Him? He gave you unique gifts and wove them into who you are, and He has a plan for you to use those gifts. Often times, God will put you into situations where you can use the spiritual gifts that He gave you.

No matter what your own personal spiritual gifts are, they're important to God. Let me give you something to think about. Let's say you take the ingredient ... Salt ... Out of all your food. Blehhhhh! But it's only salt. It usually dissolves and you can't even see it, but it sure does make a difference. Don't underestimate the importance of the spiritual gifts that the Holy Spirit gives you, no matter how insignificant YOU think they may be.

Actually, your gifts don't only belong to you. The Holy Spirit did not give them to you simply for your own benefit, but for the benefit of others, and so that people would depend on one another. If we each had all the spiritual gifts, what would we need to depend on others for? Our spiritual gifts help keep us united.

This is a wonderful explanation by the Apostle Paul, of how we're all united in Christ and how we all should depend on and appreciate one another and the spiritual gifts that each one of us has been blessed with. Let's take a look.

1 Corinthians 12:4-31
Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.
But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will. For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet but one body. And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you. Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary: And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness. For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked. That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles? Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret? But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.

What does all that mean? Well, to make a long story short, it means that we've all been given different gifts by the same Holy Spirit, and that we all need one another.

But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.

Your spiritual gifts are brought to life to profit ALL.

Paul is kind of humorous saying, if the whole body were an eye, how would it hear? Good point, huh? Another point he makes is that some gifts, even though they may seem weak, are very very important. Let me give you another example: The eye is very fragile, even an eyelash inside of it can cause much pain, but without the eye, the hand which is very strong, would have a difficult time doing its work.

What did Paul mean by that last sentence? It's good to sincerely want to do the best things FOR GOD ... BUT, Paul adds, I'm going to show you something that's very important! Oh my, yes! Throw a little LOVE into the recipe and then you've got the right idea. Paul goes on in
1 Corinthians, Chapter 13 to teach more about this, that you can have all the gifts in the world, but without LOVE ... If you don't share them with LOVE, they're useless.

Have you ever gotten a paper cut on your baby finger, and even though you're in perfect health, that teeny tiny little paper cut can absolutely ruin your day? Whenever you consider yourself unworthy, or the gifts that the Holy Spirit has freely given to you unimportant, you're really affecting the lives of others. No matter how unimportant you may think your gift is, not using it causes a wound that effects someone else, and quite possibly many people.

It's easy to forget how we should use our spiritual gifts. When you bring to life the gifts that the Holy Spirit has bestowed upon you, do you remember that you're sharing it with the Lord's beloved people? Do you give it freely? Do you like to take the credit for your talent or are you humble and make certain that others (who don't understand as well as you do) know that it is a gift of God, and that you are merely a vessel by which HE is distributing HIS gift?

Let's talk about specific spiritual gifts for a moment.

In today's world, it seems that our gifts are different from those that people were blessed with back in Paul's day, but is that really true? What about doctors? True, most have not come by their profession spiritually, but though our society requires a degree from medical school to be a doctor of any kind, some are spiritually gifted in their work. They are today's healers.

You'll find that our world today doesn't require the gift of speaking in tongues in the same way that it did in Biblical times and the Word of God today is spread through other means of communication, but make no mistake,
HIS WORD GETS AROUND!

What about the gift of prophecy? Don't we have people alive today who are God's prophets? This is an interesting question. Many people believe that God doesn't use prophets any longer. I'd like to give you something to think about. In our unbelieving world of today, if God did send us the precious gift of a prophet, who would believe? I'm going to give you a few seconds to think about your answer ...

. . .

. . .

. . .

No matter what your answer was, doesn't it mean that a prophet is really in the eye of the beholder?

Peter tells us in the book of the Acts of the Apostles, quoting scripture from Joel 2:28-30, that the gift of prophecy will be given to men and women in the End Times:

Acts 2:17-18
And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.


What about teachers, and helpers, etc.? If you look around, you'll see that there are still people who are gifted in many of the same ways, in our world today, as in Biblical times.

Do you have gifts that you don't even know about? Perhaps you are gifted with something that you don't consider a 'gift' but is something that touches other peoples' lives. Maybe hospitality is a gift of yours. You may find it effortless, whereas someone who may be a fantastic cook might have great difficulty making people feel welcome, whether it be at home or at a Christian community gathering. If you've ever seen the old movie "It's A Wonderful Life" you know that there are many people who's lives you've affected just by being ... You. That alone is a spiritual gift. The fact that God created you, is evidence that He has a plan for you, and that even if you can't put a title on a specific 'gift' ... You ARE a gift to others.

The way that we use our gifts is so very important. If someone gave you a gift, and you thought it was too special to use it, what good does it do? It may be nice to look at, but what does it profit anyone? The same goes for your spiritual gifts. What if those who are gifted with musical ability didn't sing? What good does it do for anyone then? Don't put your spiritual gifts up on a shelf somewhere, and never use them ... It's a shame for them to go to waste.

Some people are jealous of other peoples' spiritual gifts, and this is a problem that apparently was going on way back when, too. If the word jealous is too harsh for you, let's use the word ... Envious. Paul explains, using the parts of our physical body, as an example of how we should view our spiritual gifts as parts of the body of Christ, and not to misjudge our importance.


How you use your gifts is important:

Romans 12:4-16
For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: 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, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness. Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

What does that mean? It means to give your gifts with LOVE. We should never take advantage of spiritual gifts or take them for granted either, whether they be our gifts, or someone else's. As Paul said above, your gift is serving the Lord, which deserves reverence, whether you are giving or receiving.

A lot of people claim that they don't have any gifts or talents, or that they just don't know what their gifts are. Sometimes this is for attention but sometimes it's because they don't want the responsibility that goes along with being gifted. Let me give you an example:

Two year old Junior learned the ABC's from watching Sesame Street every morning, but when mommy wants Junior to sing the ABC's for Aunt Gertrude, he remains as silent as a clam. Not because he doesn't know the ABC's, but because once someone else knows that Junior knows his ABC's, he knows he's going to have to sing them for everybody that happens by until he's 5!

This is just a silly example, but do we realize the happiness and the benefits that we are keeping from our fellow Christians by not using our God given gifts? Sharing your spiritual gifts takes your precious time ... It's a sacrifice, for God. Whatever you do for others, you do for the Lord. We all belong to Him ... We're all A PART of Him. Do you have something better to do with your time than that?

There are other kinds of spiritual gifts, that aren't talent related ... But the kind that are like presents, if you will. If you're a Christian who hasn't recognized your spiritual gifts, take a good look at these:

THE GIFT OF JESUS CHRIST

John 3:16
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

THE GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

Acts 2:38-39
Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.

Luke 11:13
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?

THE GIFT OF ETERNAL LIFE

Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

THE GIFT OF GRACE

Ephesians 2:8
For by Grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God ...

EVERY GOOD GIFT

James 1:17
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

Never be so busy that you forget to recognize the small miraculous gifts from God in your every day life.

God doesn't hide our gifts from us. If you sincerely look for them, you'll find them ... Just ask Him. The Lord won't deny your earnest prayer to fulfill the plan that He has for you. Pray for the opportunity to discover your own special niche. Oft times, when we put our own plans aside and open our heart to the guidance of the Holy Spirit, is when we truly discover the gifts that God designed just for us. You've discovered that one of your gifts is to REPRESENT.

STEP #8

To complete this Using Your Spiritual Gifts step you must CHOOSE to find out more about using your spiritual gifts that we have learned about. You can begin learning more by reading these two studies so that you will know the TRUTH so that if and when YOU are given them, you will be using your spiritual gifts effectively and wisely.

CLICK THE LINK BELOW TO LEARN MORE ABOUT SPIRITUAL GIFTS

SPIRITUAL GIFTS

Continuing in EACH step daily is so very important.

Go back over each step often to be sure you have not missed anything.

To continue our program, you can return tomorrow and select:

STEP #9

I'll meet you there!

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