Saturday, March 5, 2016

A Special Gift - Martin Wiles

He has given each one of us a special gift according to the generosity of Christ. Ephesians 4:7 NLT

Peer pressure caused me to want it. When I received it, it was the most special gift I’d ever been given. 

In the early 1970’s, banana seat bicycles were popular. Why I’m not sure. Perhaps it was because they took on the shape of a motorcycle. Nestled on the seat with my fingers caressing the grips attached to the high handlebars made me dream of the day I’d ride a motorcycle with the same kind of bars—although that never happened. A sissy bar slithering from the back tire up and beyond the back of the banana seat completed the ensemble. When I received mine and what color it was has escaped me. The memory of getting it has not. 

Parents give children gifts because they love them; God does too. We call them gifts of the Spirit because it is God’s Spirit who resides in us and gives us the authority and power to use them. Much like my parents gave me permission to ride my bicycle. 

God’s most special gift is salvation. Beyond that he gives other gifts that enable us to do his work in this world (Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12, and Ephesians 4). Whether all of these gifts are still active and whether or not the lists are complete is debatable, but immaterial. Some may have only one gift; many have more. What’s pertinent is what I’m doing with the gift. 

I can discover my gift through prayer, by noticing what comes easily to me, and by listening to what others tell me they see God doing through me. Knowing my gifts is important; using them is crucial. Putting my bike under the garage and never riding it would have been ludicrous. I planned to use what I had madly craved. 

God will often remove gifts that aren’t utilized. Just as I sell or give away things I no longer have use for. How I employ my gift to serve Him and others is as varied as the personalities of the people the gifts are scattered to. But if I open my eyes and tune my spirit to his Spirit, He’ll give the opportunities and show me how to take advantage of them. 

Find your gift…and use it!

Prayer: Father, thank You for gifting us so we might be effective in Your service. Give us many opportunities to use what You’ve given us. 

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