"For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has distributed to each of you" (Rom. 12:3, NIV).
Do you wish to discover your spiritual gift? Two passages in particular tell you how to do it.
In 1 Corinthians 12:31, Paul says, "Covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way" (KJV). In the Greek, this passage means "the excellent way by which you discover your gifts is by love."
It sounds almost too simple to be true: You can best discover your gift when you demonstrate agape love. Yet it is true. When we love people and long to serve them, when we totally forgive and keep no record of wrongs, then we spontaneously find ways of expressing that love and the gifts of the Spirit emerge in us. There are no shortcuts to finding the gifts. We must have hearts devoid of bitterness.
The second principle is found in Romans 12:3. Basically, what Paul is saying is "Don't claim to have what you don't have."
Though we are to covet the gifts, we must not seek them for our own glory or impute to ourselves abilities that simply aren't there. We must live sacrificial lives, seeking at each moment only to love and serve God in holiness, humility and prayer. Then, though we may not be the first violinist or the conductor, we will quite naturally and simply find our own gift and our place in the orchestra, almost without realizing it. Sometimes the position may be quite prominent. But it will be under God's control and God's responsibility and almost a matter of indifference to us, since all that matters is God's glory and not ours.
One further guideline here is that God does not encourage us to be incompetent, and if we feel that we are working incompetently, then it is a pretty strong hint that we are not where God intended us to be.
If you find that these are the marks of your life, ask God what He wants you to change in your life, and then offer yourself to Him again as a living and daily sacrifice.
Excerpted from Worshipping God (Hodder & Stoughton, 2004) by R.T. Kendall.
For a limited time, we are extending our celebration of the 40th anniversary of Charisma. As a special offer, you can get 40 issues of Charisma magazine for only $40!