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Monday, August 14, 2006

 

Spiritual Gifts


Over the weekend we had a Spiritual Gifting weekend.


It was a great weekend, a time for people to explore how God has gifted them and think about how they fit into the ministry of our church.


Over the weekend an issue come to my mind, and has been bugging me ever since.


Why is it that we Christians always try and create a two-tiered system for following Jesus.


Example:

Why are the following 'Spiritual Gifts':

Giving, Service, Evangelist, Hospitality, Faith, Voluntary Poverty and Intercession?


To create people who are 'gifted' in these areas absolves those not 'gifted' in these areas from practicing these things.

"It is ok, I am not gifted with Service, so it is ok to leave everyone else to wash the dishes after tea, while I sit around and talk."

"It is ok, I am not gifted as an Evangelist, so I don't have to share the Gospel with those around me"

"It is ok, I am not gifted with Voluntary Poverty, so Jesus isn't calling me to sell everything I have, give it to the poor and follow him."


Didn't Jesus tells us that to follow after him is to serve those around us, while he was washing the disciples' feet?

Aren't we as Christians called to share what God has done in our lives (assuming he really has done something in our life) with those around us?

Didn't Jesus call the rich young man to sell everything to follow him, then turn around to the disciples (who had already given up their material possessions to follow him) and tell them how hard it was for the rich to enter the kingdom of heaven?

Didn't Jesus talk about Hell twice in all four gospels, but talk about money hundreds of times?


How hard is it to be comfortable following Jesus?

I'm ok with Jesus because I have given my life to him.

I'm ok with Jesus because I tithe 10 percent of my income.

I'm ok with Jesus because I work in full time ministry.

I'm ok with Jesus because I help in the Sunday School.

I'm ok with Jesus because I am serving as a missionary overseas.


How do we know when enough is enough?

How do we know when we are truly following?

How do we know when we are giving 'all of ourselves'?


On Sunday morning we sang of surrendering all to Jesus.

I wonder how many people were interpreting the word 'all' in the same way that I was.


My prayer then, as it is now, is that I will always continue to be challenged as I sing those words, never feeling that 'I'm ok because ...'


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Comments:
You must have missed when Brian was addressing what youve just said.He said that all people are called to discipleship and to different things like surrendering all to Jesus, evangelising etc In fact one of the examples he used was with prayer. He said that certain people have the gift of prayer, interceeding for others and that when they pray something extra special happens.He also said that doesnt excuse people from not praying.

we all are called to evangelise.but how many people can actually talk to someone theyve just met about God and His plan of salvation?not many,but those with the gift of evangelism, something everyone is called to, can do it better than others.I know youd agree with me.

i think your over reacting saying that because someone is good at something we all dont need to do it.look at the positives of the teaching like we're all part of a body with different things to do,we're all important, we all have something to offer.

ive never heard it said that bcause someone had a gift we dont need to do it...is this something youve heard or is it one of your scholary/mind ideas?

hehehehe james
 
I agree Liam.
Donna
 
Forget about gifts - this spiritual issue doesn't even make sense unless your whole life is transformed and your lifestyle is devoted to following Jesus. We haven't even come close to that yet. We are called to live a new lifestyle - the gifts become important once we are living that life. Its like playing Aussie Rules - everyone playing is a player. Some are better in different positions and some have better skills - but everyone is still playing Aussie Rules. In Christianity we have spectators and people on the bench sitting round doing these courses and worrying about what position they'll play if they ever get round to playing. I say play Aussie Rules - get in the game - yes you will have to kick, handball, mark, run etc. You have to do it all. If kicking is evangelism, and only a few people can actually talk to someone they've just met about God and His plan of salvation...then you have a pretty crappy team.

Only once you start playing the game can you work out where your strengths are, what positions you're good at...some course can't do that for you. My thoughts only.
 
Future Blogger,
good comment.
You have hit the nail on the head about my point.
I was saying, "why do we created a two tiered Christianity?"
You said, "why don't we all play the game?"

To continue your analogy however,
why is it that we consider kicking, marking and handballing spiritual gifts?
These are integral to playing the game. Some people have pace, some people have strength, some people have guile but everyone needs to kick the ball.

What 'spiritual gifts' are the kicking and marking of Aussie Rules?
 
we all mark, all handball, all kick. but some people do it better and are called 'full backs' or 'full forwards' according to where their talent lies.

spiritual gifts are different to the normal things we're suppose to do in that people with these gifts are supernaturally better than others who do the 'normal' thing.

james
 
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