To help the learner to identify and develop his/her spiritual gifts and use them to benefit the body of Christ.
By the end of this lesson, the participants should:
- Have begun the journey of identifying his/her spiritual gifts
- Commit to develop their spiritual gifts
- Use their spiritual gifts to build the body of ChristIntroductionWe learnt in the previous lesson that a spiritual gift is “a special attribute” bestowed on every member of the Body of Christ by the Holy Spirit according to God’s grace. The gift is given for the purpose of edifying the body of Christ. There are different kinds of spiritual gifts and every believer has at least one. To maximize the usage, we need to identify and develop these spiritual gifts with the help of the Holy Spirit. It is the responsibility of every believer to discover and develop their spiritual gift.
1.How To Discover Your Spiritual Gift
There is no formula used to discover one’s spiritual gifts. However there are tried and tested ways by which many people have discovered their spiritual gifts. The following ways may be very helpful to all who are desiring to discover their spiritual gifts.
This is the primary means of discovering our spiritual gifts. As we spend time in the presence of God, He reveals to us our gifts and calling. God can reveal to you both your gift and calling.
Luke 11: 9-13
11 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for[a] a fish, will give him a snake instead? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
- Studying God’s word.
Another way of discovering one’s spiritual gifts is through studying God’s word. Some key passages that address this subject include:
“if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[a] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.”
1 Peter 4:9-11
“Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.”
- Exercise the gift.
Sometimes a person has to participate in the available ministry opportunities to know which one they are gifted in. For example you might never know that you have the gift of teaching until you try it out. (The Making of a Leader, by J. Clinton)
1 Timothy 4:14
“Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.”
- Ability to see a need.
Where you see a need is often the area where your gift is. For example, one who is gifted in the area of administration will naturally appreciate order, budgeting and planning. Joseph saw a need in Egypt and ended up as the answer to it.
Genesis. 41: 39-43
“Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has made all this known to you, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. 40 You shall be in charge of my palace, and all my people are to submit to your orders. Only with respect to the throne will I be greater than you.”
- Receive Feedback.
When you are gifted in a particular area, people will frequently notice and tell you. If believers, especially people close to you, keep saying that you are good in something, most likely it is because it’s one of your spiritual gifts. Apollo was given excellent feedback by Priscilla and Aquila.
Acts 18: 24-26
“Meanwhile a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was a learned man, with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures. 25 He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor[a] and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John. 26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately.”
- Carry out Gift Inventory.
There exists a number of tools that one can use to identify one’s area of gifting. One of such inventory is Wagner- Modified Houts questionnaire.by Fuller Institute
Take the gift inventory
After the test, sample some feedback. Most likely you will have “Wow!” moments!
DEVELOPING YOUR SPIRITUAL GIFTS
Once you know your spiritual gifts, you will be in a position to begin developing them. Spiritual gifts, like muscles, must be exercised. Paul the apostle reminded his mentee Timothy to do just this:
2 Timothy 1:6-7
“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7 For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.”
This text suggests that one can have spiritual gifts that may remain unutilized and or underutilized. To develop a spiritual gift, one needs:
- to find a ministry of the church related to it and begin serving there.The other way of developing your spiritual gift is
- by learning from those who have more experience in the area of our gifting.
For maximum utilization of spiritual gifts, one needs to concentrate on one’s core area of gifting.
Now that you know the area of your gifting, the next level is for you to begin looking out for an opportunity to serve God. Begin to seek God in prayers to direct you to the Church department where your gift can be utilized effectively in serving God. Do not wait any longer. The Lord is looking for workers.
Matthew 9: 37-38
“Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. 38 Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”
Will you be the answer to the problem of few workers in the church:
You can make a difference.