GIFTS FOR GIVING
“Earnestly pursue love and eagerly desire spiritual gifts,
especially the gift of prophecy” — Ezekiel 22:30
Our loving Heavenly Father has given ministry tools to His people for the purpose of helping others. They are the gifts of the Godhead: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Pastor Jack says, “Learning to distinguish the source and purpose of the different gifts of the Godhead are key to effective ministry to others.”
The Bible tells us to “earnestly desire the most helpful gifts.” 1 Corinthians 12:31. These gifts are not for us to collect like fine pieces of art. Rather, we are to be a conduit through which the gifts operate not the possessor of the gift.
The distinctive gifts given by the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit truly represent the Trinity at work in creation and redemption.
THE FATHER’S GIFTS
“In His grace, God has given us different gifts…” Romans 12:6 NLT. Your Creator has placed some of seven possible traits within you – prophesying, serving, teaching, encouraging, giving, leading, and showing mercy. You know which gifts are within you because they are the gifts that stir you and you instinctively gravitate to. You are created that way for the purpose of serving, blessing and helping others. Our Heavenly Father gave His family gifts to encourage, edify, and inspire each other that they may remain healthy and happy.
THE SON’S GIFTS
“So, Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.” Ephesians 4:11-12 NIV. Pastor Jack says, “The Father says who you are, and Jesus gives gifts to help you understand what you can become.” Jesus gives ministry gifts to us to perfect and mature what the Father has put in us.
THE HOLY SPIRIT GIFTS
1 Corinthians 12:8-10 says to different people the Holy Spirit gives various gifts to empower and enable ministry to others. To some are given gifts of insight; knowledge, wisdom, and discernment. To other the gifts of power – faith, healing, and miracles. Still others may have the gifts of prophecy – prophecy, tongues and interpretation. Interestingly all of these gifts are verbal. They involve speaking to others for their good. The Holy Spirit distributes these as needed to increase your ability to minister to others.
ALL IN LOVE
Using these gifts must be in the context of self-sacrifice and love for others. After the Father’s gifts are listed the next verse says, “Love must be sincere…” Romans 12:9 BSB. After the list of the Holy Spirit’s gifts in 1 Corinthians 12 the next chapter is the chapter of love. God is telling us all of these gifts must be in the context of concern and affection for others.
Love means this gift is not for me but for me to deliver something from God to others. The one presenting the gift should do it in the most appropriate and gracious manner possible. The one accepting the gift should receive what the Lord is saying with openness, overlooking any imperfections the person may have.
1 Corinthians 12:31 says to “earnestly desire the best gifts.” Pastor Jack has often been asked, what is the best gift? His answer is always the same – the gift most needed for the situation before you. Paul strongly urges us to covet the gift that is most appropriate for ministering to any situation.
If you feel you don’t have them, perhaps it is because you have not asked for them. “Until now you have not asked for anything in My name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.” John 16:24. “Ask and it will be given to you.” Matthew 7:7.
Pastor Jack wants to encourage you to identify the gifts you were given and function in them. Father God reveals to you what He created you to be. Jesus gives you leaders to help you become that ministering person. The Holy Spirit enhances that gift in you to enlarge and empower your ministry potential. Once you know the gifts you have been blessed with, you will go forth and serve others at their point of need.
I encourage you to be a conduit who channels God’s creative power to others who need that gift and thereby fulfill your purpose and fruitfulness.