Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Thanks for the gifrts!

"Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, ‘Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,’ it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, ‘Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,’ it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body." (1 Corinthians 12:14-20, NIV)

This church in Corinth has problems. There are people in the church, evidently, who believe they aren’t worth much. It could be there was a pitiful lowliness infecting some of the members of the body or maybe it was just plain jealousy. Instead of rejoicing in their gifts and calling, these poor souls looked at the gifts of others and cried, "Woe is me! I’m not worth much. Look at the great things that guy who’s performing miracles is doing."

How ridiculous! They have the same Spirit of God working in them. Their gifts are just as God-given. God chose the gifts they had so that the body wouldn’t be lacking in any good thing, so that it would be healthy.

A healthy church has a good mix of the gifts. A healthy church is full of people showing God to the world in a wide variety of ways! Any church that has only one or two gifted people doing what God’s called them to is going to be weak and ineffective. The body is sick when only a few are using their gifts. So rejoice in the gifts God’s given you. Don’t look around and covet the abilities God’s given your sister! You are a part of the body. You are becoming, through the Holy Spirit’s work in you, exactly what God wants you to be. Thank God for what he’s given you to do.

"God, thank you that you’ve made me to encourage others."

"Lord, thank you for allowing me to give generously to meet the needs of others."

"Father, thank you for the opportunities you’ve given me to use the gift of wisdom."

"Jesus, thank you for the gift of faith you’ve given me to help your church."

God has arranged all the parts of the body just as he wants them to be. He has gifted you in a special way. He chose your gift mix and put you here so that his church would be whole and healthy. He’s done the same for every believer who walks through the doors of your local church. Your neighbor has the gifts God chose for him. That person sitting across the aisle has other gifts that, when she uses them, benefit you.

Can you pray this? "God, thank you for giving me spiritual gifts. Thank you for giving my brothers and sisters gifts, too."

Now, go encourage another believer. Thank them for using their gifts. Tell them why you are thankful to God for them.

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