Spiritual Gifts: Who Needs ‘Em?

This post is from the archives. However, members of my church family and I have been discussing spiritual gifts as of late. I forget how important and powerful the realization of your gifting truly is. With that in mind, I thought I would re-run this spiritual gift series.

I am also guest posting today over at Bianca Juarez’s blog, In the Name of Love. Bianca is a dynamo for Jesus, a powerful teacher, and worker in God’s Kingdom. I’m honored to appear on her blog today. Go show some love and check it out!

Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms. (1 Pet. 4:10)

I remember the day, the exact moment, that I discovered my spiritual gift. It was as if someone placed prescription glasses upon my face and what once was fuzzy became clear.
I suddenly understood why the actions of others made me want to scream with frustration. And still, why particular moments brought me such satisfaction and joy.

Since then, alongside my husband, I have been committed to helping other people see more clearly by plopping a pair of big thick spiritual gift glasses on their face.

First off, a lot of people it seems no longer believe in spiritual gifts. Or more specifically, many people only believe in certain spiritual gifts…and even then, they don’t believe those gifts are available to any believer.

Time to bust open ye olde Bible…

Paul starts  off in 1Corinthians 12 saying, “Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.” See, he already knew we would have the tendency to become ignorant regarding spiritual gifts.

He goes on to write:

“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.”

I interpret these scriptures to say that the Holy Spirit deposits (at a minimum) one spiritual gift into every believer. My husband is of the thinking that some individuals, like Paul for example, can and do actually have more than one gift.

Sure, it sounds nice and cuddly and fluffy—we all have a special gift. Yippee. But God didn’t include this list within 1 Corinthians (and subsequently other areas of the Bible) to give us the warm and fuzzies. He included this description of spiritual gifts to equip and encourage us, the Church.

If this is true, however, why are so many people quick to dismiss spiritual gifts as a once-manifested-but-no-longer-needed phenomena?

For one thing, they are scared. People freak out upon hearing the word “prophet.” Heck, forget the word “prophecy.” You might as well just yell “fire.”

It seems to me that in order to squash that which they don’t understand or cannot control, (i.e. “prophets and their prophecy”) naysayers just proclaim a particular gift is “dead” or “inactive” or no longer available in this day and age.

I don’t know about you, but I think this day and age is screaming for a prophet…or two.

Likewise, the current American church structure downplays (or even ignores) “weaker” gifts like mercy, giving, administration, and service. Yet, it elevates other gifts like teachers and pastors.

We are told in the word that every gift is indispensable. No one can boast because they got hooked up with a shepherding gift or an apostle gift.

God does not play favorites. He distributes gifts in order to equip and build up the body. Spiritual gifts act as the motivation and inspiration behind why we do what we do. The truth is, we all need spiritual gifts and I believe if we call Jesus “Lord” we all have one.

You may be asking the question: Well, how do I discover my own spiritual gift? Stay tuned for a follow-up post next Monday where I will address that very question.

But for now, consider these questions Do you even believe in spiritual gifts? What has been your experience with them or with teachings on the subject? Do you happen to know your gift?

Pssst…tomorrow, I’ll have a follow-up post discussing how to determine your own spiritual gift, how to exercise such gifts, and I’ll share my own gifting with all of you.

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Nicole Cottrell
Nicole Cottrell is trained in the fine art of button-pushing. She uses her skills daily on Modern Reject where she writes about the intersection of faith and culture as well as the unpopular stuff no one else likes to talk about. Nicole is a speaker, writer, discipler, and coffee fanatic. She and her husband planted the Foundation, a network of house churches in Arizona. Nicole lives in Scottsdale with her husband and two little munchkins, three of the coolest and funniest people she knows.

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