"If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!" – Matthew 7:4
"for God’s gifts and his call are irrevocable." – Romans 11:29
"We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us ..." – Romans 12:6a
"There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work." – 1 Corinthians 12:4-6
"But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says:
“When he ascended on high,
he took many captives
and gave gifts to his people.” – Ephesians 4:7-8 (Psalm 68:18)
General gifts are the talents and abilities that God has blessed each of us with. Your unique ability to focus, your special heart for compassion, your ability to see others when most don’t. Your gifts are most simply defined as those things you can do easily and almost without thought or exertion. And, while the categories of our gifting may be generic, e.g., many people may have the gift of diplomacy, painting, teaching, animal husbandry, caring for others, the easy understanding and application of mathematics, physics, chemistry or biology, that gifting is expressed in the world uniquely in the divine context of your creation and your story.
Think about that for a minute. If that were not true, everyone with the gift of diplomacy would be a clone. The same expression of the same gift. The same would be true for any gift you can think of … caring for others, teaching, the physical sciences, whatever gift you can think of. Without the divine expression of gifts uniquely within the context of our unique humanity, those of us with similar gifting would present that gifting to the world in exactly the same way.
However, we know from the practical experience of the world that this is not the case. Not all painters paint the same thing. And, even if they were all asked to paint the same tree, the final result of those paintings will be as unique and diverse and expressed in as many ways as there are painters. Interestingly, the same is true technically. Take software. While there are structures and syntax within a programming language, the expression of that that language is unique and dependent upon who the programmer is. And as programs become more complex they also become more and more unique. The same is true of our gifting. The more complex our story, the more uniquely our gifting is expressed in the world. Unfortunately for most of us our gifts are hidden in plain sight. Our gifts have been given to us but we fail to recognize and use them.
There are two primary reasons for this. First, our gifting comes to us so easily that we believe everyone “can do it”. The ease with which our gifting flows in and through us becomes an obstacle to us recognizing and stepping into it. Because we come to believe everyone can do what we can do, we minimize its expression in our lives and thus its effect in the world. Second, it is the place where we receive some of our strongest wounds. The arrows and the body blows we experience within the context of our stories are most often aimed at our gifting. The Evil One’s goal here is the same as it is in all his work, separation.
The Enemy knows how powerful your redeemed stories are when they are connected to your redeemed gifting. Even as you walk with Jesus in the redemption of your story, if he can separate you from your gifting, your glory, your impact in the world that God intended when he created you, is diminished and maybe even extinguished.
Pause here. Take a few deep breaths and ask Jesus, “Lord, what are the things I do really well and really easily? What are my gifts?” Sit with the question. Listen. Write them down. Meditate on them. Take your time. This is not a race. Sit with that question for days or weeks if necessary. And, when they are recognized, accept them as true and that your expression of them in the world is unique. Then …
“Jesus, I bring your Kingdom – your Life, your Love, and your Glory over, in, and through the gifting you have given me. I accept it and I thank you for it. I release my gifting to you Lord Jesus for your provision and protection. Redeem my gifting Lord, that I may be all that you created me to be! Amen!”
Well done Beloved! Well done!