Note from the Life Application Study Bible
“In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.” (Romans 12:6-8, NLT)
Just take a look at the beautiful world around us; God’s love of diversity is evident. Just as there are differences in his earthly creation, there is also variety in the spiritual gifts he has given us. Though we all have different gifts, the goal is the same—to give glory to the giver. Read more about God’s gifts from the Life Application Study Bible:
Look at the list of gifts in Romans 12:6-8 and imagine the kinds of people who would have each gift. Prophets are often bold and articulate. Servers (those in ministry) are faithful and loyal. Teachers are clear thinkers. Encouragers know how to motivate others. Givers are generous and trusting. Leaders are good organizers and managers. Those who show kindness are caring people who are happy to give their time to others. It would be difficult for one person to embody all these gifts. An assertive prophet would not usually make a good counselor, and a generous giver might fail as a leader. When you identify your own gifts (and this list is far from complete), ask God and others how you can best use them. At the same time, realize that your gifts can’t do the work of the church all alone. Be thankful for people whose gifts are completely different from yours. Let your strengths balance their weaknesses, and be grateful that their abilities make up for your deficiencies. Together you can build Christ’s church.
God gives us gifts so we can build up his church. To use them effectively, we must:
- realize that all gifts and abilities come from God
- understand that not everyone has the same gifts
- know who we are and what we do best
- dedicate our gifts to God’s service and not to our personal success
- be willing to utilize our gifts wholeheartedly, not holding back anything from God’s service
God’s gifts differ in nature, power, and effectiveness according to his wisdom and graciousness, not according to our faith. Our role is to be faithful and to look for ways to serve others using the gifts God has given us.