This devo originally appeared on whillschurch.org.
This is part of the ongoing series on Simple Discipleship.
Introduction: Discovering The Rotary Phone”
Simple Discipleship: Who I Am In Christ, Part 1
Part 2 of Part 1 (Who I Am In Christ, Part 2)
Simple Discipleship: Feed Yourself
This box is important. Apparently, it is very important. We’ve moved it from Kansas, Arkansas, Colorado, and now back to Kansas. It’s been in a few basements, a garage, and a storage unit.
What’s in it?
I have no idea. But I’m sure it’s got something valuable or memorable or important. Or maybe it’s some gift that somebody gave to us that we just didn’t have the heart to throw away or return. I’m half tempted to just leave it a mystery and put in my will for one of the kids.
Don’t judge me too harshly. Chances are you have a box exactly like this.
Whatever the reason, there are a lot of folks who treat their spiritual gift the same way. They either don’t know what it is or maybe they sort of know what it is but just don’t use it. Too busy, too tired, too whatever.
One of the fastest ways to grow spiritual is to know and then USE your spiritual gift. There are somethings that God can only teach us in the grind of serving Him. I’m not talking about the once a year fun run or golf tournament or big event where we get everyone together and have this great big push. Those are good and fun. I like those events but those don’t have near the effect of serving in ongoing ministry – week in, week out. And we’re not going to serve effectively or joyfully if we don’t serve in the area of our gifting.
So, step 3 and 4 in simple discipleship is FINDING your spiritual gift and USING your spiritual gift. Why both steps? Just finding out your gift is not enough. You actually have to use it. I know that exercise every day is good for me. But that’s not enough. I actually have to do it. Hence – know AND use your gift.
Lifeway has some great online resources in this area. It’s simple, easy and pretty straightforward. I’d start there.
But the next step is crucial – actually using your gift. Spiritual gifts don’t show up fully developed. They have to be honed and developed. That means practice and practice and then more practice. It means having a mentor in that same area that will coach us. It means serving somewhere for the long haul.
We have a 5 week observation period for all of our ministries. That means, you show up and hang out in that ministry area for 5 weeks. That gives all parties involved to figure out your gift and how to use it in that area of ministry. Sometimes we find the gift but realize – they are in the wrong area. They don’t need to be in students, they need to be in kids. Or adults or creative team – you get the picture. We want to match the gifts to the area of passion then we want to disciple and help coach that person to get the best out of them. After the 5 weeks, if it’s all a green light – we ask for a year commitment. Pretty simple, pretty straightforward.
If you want to really grow – knowing your gift isn’t enough. Got to use it. Got to use it with other people who can help you get better at it, to develop it.
Now…I think it might be time to do something with this box.