Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Gifts and Calling

Many today are unsure of what their gifts and calling are in the body of Christ.  When a believer does not know what purpose God has called him/her to do it can be very frustrating.     Without the knowledge and understanding of God's purpose we will feel helpless, hopeless and lacking purpose in this life.  

God tells us in Jeremiah 29:11 says "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." In Ephesians 2:10 says "For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God has prepared in advance for us to do."  So we can clearly see God desires to utilize us in His Kingdom for His glory.  
So if God has a plan and purpose for each one of us the question then arises, what is my gift and calling?  How do I identify this?   Not everyone has the same gift or calling and the gift may be in varying degrees.  God identifies the gifts and calling in His word, so it is important to seek God's perfect will for your life.  
Outlined below are scriptures of God's gifts and callings:

"We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith;  if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach;  if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,  do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully."  
Romans 12:6-8

"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

"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.  Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues.  All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines."  
1 Corinthians 12:4-11

"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."  1 Corinthians 13:13

These scriptures clearly outline specific purposes that God has to edify and build up His body for His glory and his gifts are irrevocable (Romans 11:29).  Let's outline these gifts:  

We see that there is the seven gifts of grace, which are prophesying, serving, teaching, encouraging, giving generously, leading and showing mercy.  Then we have the fivefold ministry of God which build up the body of Christ, which are the apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers.  Then we have the nine gifts of the Spirit that are distributed by the Spirit of God.  These include a message of wisdom, a message of knowledge, faith, gifts of healing, miraculous powers, prophecy, discernment of spirits, speaking in tongues and interpretation of tongues.  Last the greatest gift is the gift of love.  

Without experiencing and knowing the love of God and walking in love, our gifts are futile.    So the greatest one is to love God, then others.  It is God's goodness that leads others to repentance and love is the greatest motivator of all.  

Some of the gifts and calling are seen in the natural.  The greatest way to determine if you are in the perfect will of God is when you can function in the body by His grace.  When you do not have the grace to function in any of these gifts that it is a good determination that you may be out of the will of God.  So seeking Him is important in functioning in your gifting. May the Lord reveal your gift and callings to you as you move forward in your walk with Christ.  

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