By Daniel Shafer
For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.
1 Corinthians 12:8-10
As we enter into the second week of our series, A Dimly Lit Room, we are going to be delving into the gifts of the Holy Spirit. These gifts were presented to the early church as a way of unification, and a sign of the Holy Spirit at work in them. Each of us is given a gift through the Holy Spirit, and is expected to use it to pursue, love, and glorify God.
For this calling, we must first acknowledge the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives and look to see what gifts he has given to us. Using spiritual gifts tests can give you an idea of where your gifts lie, and through prayer, you can see where the Holy Spirit has directed you and worked through you.
Sometimes, they are in accordance with your nature. My mom, for example, is gifted with discernment. She is nearly always correct as a judge of character and is able to sense when something is off. This lines up with her natural curiosity and avid thirst for knowledge. But the manifestation of her gift is beyond what she herself could know. It’s obvious from an observational stance to see the Holy Spirit working through her in this gift.
However, sometimes He will point out areas that you don’t see in yourself at all, but where the Spirit decides to work through you anyway.
For me, this is in the gift of teaching. I generally do not like to draw attention to myself or lead groups. But the Holy Spirit doesn’t seem to really care about my preferences. I used to actively avoid small groups and generally only debate theological concepts with family.
But as I grew and learned to submit to what the Spirit was asking of me, I found myself in situations to use a gift I didn’t think myself suited for—whether it was being approached by people who had questions about various theological topics, or when I was asked to lead a small group by my friends. Despite my reservations, I submitted to the Spirit and allowed him to work His gift through me.
Understanding your gifts is only possible if you are willing to acknowledge the Holy Spirit and actively learn what He is trying to accomplish through your life.
One thing to remember in all of this is that we are each gifted differently and are to use our gifts for the edification of all. As Paul explains in 1 Corinthians, “For each is given the manifestation of the Holy Spirit for the common good.” and “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.”
I hope you’ll join us as we continue on our journey of understanding your gifts and learning to live them out.