You are a gift!
Amplified Bible (AMP)
6 Having gifts (faculties, talents, qualities) that differ according to the grace given us, let us use them: [He whose gift is] prophecy, [let him prophesy] according to the proportion of his faith;
7 [He whose gift is] practical service, let him give himself to serving; he who teaches, to his teaching;
8 He who exhorts (encourages), to his exhortation; he who contributes, let him do it in simplicity and liberality; he who gives aid and superintends, with zeal and singleness of mind; he who does acts of mercy, with genuine cheerfulness and joyful eagerness.
Authorized (King James) Version (AKJV)
6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; 7 or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; 8 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.
These are our motivational gifts, the gifts given to each of us at birth, by God.
Back in the days of one of my discipleship processes (There have been four, and this is a new season again), we were required to work through questionnaires to determine our motivational gifts, and then to begin to work on each of them.
As I read through the book, ‘Turn the World Upside Down’, Discipling the Nations with the Seven Mountain Strategy by Micheal Maiden, he brings our a real simple review of these gifts, that I feel impressed to simply post these gifts here, because in these we discover not only why we are created the way we are, but also the areas of life that we are called to serve in.
I believe that we can grow in our gifting and callings, in fact I overheard a senior minister state at a staff meeting one time, in a ministry that is exploding all over the world, ‘If you are on staff here, you gotta grow, or you gotta go!’
Quoted from the book, here is an overview of the motivational gifts:
Prophecy (Percievers) have a natural discernment to see to the heart of an issue or a person’s motives, and the perceiver desires to reveal the truth.
Servants (ministers) are motivated by a desire to help, and they naturally see what needs to be done, expecially to aid others.
Teachers love to do research, study, discover new things, and enjoy communicating their knowledge to others.
Exhorters care for the spiritual needs of others by stimulating, building up, edifying, and cheering up.
Givers are gifted to make money. Money is their friend,giving money excites them, and they are careful with what they have.
Administrators (leaders) can see the bigger picture in a situation, make instant evaluations, and assign steps of action to solve problems.
People with the gift of Mercy are focused on the emotional needs of others, they are driven by compassion, love, mercy, and forgiveness.
While there are three types of gifts mentioned in the New Testament, the motivational gifts listed here, the gifts of the Holy Spirit mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12:7-10, and the ascension gifts or leadership gifts that Jesus gave to build the church (five-fold ministry) found in Eph 4:11.
These motivational gifts often determine your life skills, and can determine what vocation in life we are called to, what areas of life to study, focus upon, and to work on developing, and what areas of the church we may be called to serve in.
There are various surveys that can help us discover what our gifts are, and areas we might focus in, I simply googled one up here: http://www.gifttest.org/survey.html
Knowing our gifts and areas of strength, and in recognizing those in others, can help us focus on what we are specifically created to do in this life, and enable us to recognize strong gifts operating in others, so that we can get along with others without completion, or misunderstanding.
If you have never done this, or done this with your congregation, business, or leadership team, results can be really helpful in team building, avoiding the old ‘trying to jam a square peg in a round hole’ problem.
Yet, as I was thinking about this, the Lord brought to my remembrance, a season of our live when we pioneered our first church.
We were asked for quarterly financial reports from our board members, and didn’t have a clue how to produce them.
Within a year, the administration of our ministry was a mess!
I remember the agony of wanting to do right, but not having a clue how!
The board eventually resigned (in hindsight, I can’t say I really blame them!), and we appointed two new board members.
Chris and Mary Fox served, and they did a missions trip up to our fledgling ministry, and stayed at our house with us. They were so kind, loving, encouraging, during a very, very difficult season in our life.
One morning after morning prayer, sister Mary said to me: ‘pastor Chris, may I ask you a question?’
‘Sure.’ I answered, ‘Anything!’
We had shown them our office, it’s piles of papers, and shared our frustration in our inability to manage well.
She gently asked: ‘Do you believe that God has called you here?’
Emphatically, I said , ‘Yes!’
Then she asked, ‘Do you believe you are called to be the senior pastor of this church?’
Again, I wearily smiled, ‘Yes, I do, because there sure doesn’t seem to be anyone else available to do it.’
She went on, ‘Well, I believe God called you here too. Now, if God called you here, then He must have given to you either a direct gift of administration, to manage this ministry, or sent someone to do it for you, can you not agree?’
I had never thought of it that way before, so I began to think about who in the congregation might be able to administrate the office work. I thought of a couple of competent people, but knew they were far too busy in their careers. I was stymied, I could not see an immediate solution.
She gently asked: ‘I believe that if God called you here, and this ministry needs administration, that that gift must be inside of you, waiting to be activated. Here is what I would like you to do: write this down: ‘By faith, I have a powerful gift of administration, and the administration of this ministry is done with excellence, ease, accuracy, and I am well able to set everything decently in order in every area of the church. Amen’
I wrote it down. So simple, yet so profound. Me, the faith preacher, had never thought of using my faith on the most obvious need in my life, clean administration.
It was clearly a word from the Lord, and I began to confess it, pray it, proclaim it, and I knew God heard and was going to do something.
One morning, during morning devotions, I saw it!
I scribbled down a set of seven office procedures that served us well for the next four years of our service there, and that when done, every Monday, made the administration a breeze, simple, and totally accurate and clean.
I called Revenue Canada at that time to ensure that what I proposed was correct and legal, and one of the senior tax auditors actually came out to the little community center where we met laughing. He asked ‘I have never received a call like this in 20 years! Are you asking me to audit your ministry?’ I said honestly: ‘Sir, if that is what it takes to ensure that our administration and handling of finances is correct and above board, then yes.” He probably still chuckles over it. Yet, he showed us how to correctly document everything so that tax returns and ministry submissions to the government we easy.
In fact, a couple of years later, a disgruntled pastor (used to be when you started a new church in a community, the devil would send principalities and powers to oppose the work, now he sends pastors! LOL!) thought to have our ministry audited by Revenue Canada (the Canadian equivalent of the IRS), and because we had sent a thank you into Peter for helping us, I still had his card, and called him up and asked him what to do.
He said, ‘Who sent you the letter?’
I read him the name off the bottom, and he chuckled again, and said: ‘They work for me. Fax me the letter, and that is the last you will ever hear from us.’
As honest ministers, we have favor, and friends in high, high places!
‘Father, please reveal to each of us, our motivational gifts, and the gifts of those You have called us to work with. Please help us to continue to develop our gifts, to continue to grow, and become all You would have us to become, in Your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen.’