Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Purpose Driven Life - Day 30






Day 30 - Shaped for Serving God


Believers will agree that God does not make mistakes. Nor does He create people for no purpose. Therefore we know that each of us were created with intent. With purpose. Each of us were pre-planned by God for a purpose, a ministry, a way to work for His glory. Before we were born, God gave each of us special gifts, traits, abilities. The best way to determine where and how we are meant to serve Him is to study our God-given gifts, interests, talents, personality and life experiences.  

If we remember that God planned our life - each day - each experience, we know that they, too, were meant to help SHAPE us. 

We know that God would not give us more than we can handle, nor would He expect us to serve without giving us the abilities to do so. These capabilities are called our SHAPE.

                                                                      Spiritual gifts
                                                                      Heart
                                                                      Abilities
                                                                      Personality
                                                                      Experience

The Bible says: "Whoever does not have the Spirit cannot receive the gifts that come from God's Spirit."  Gifts are given by God to His believers - specially selected gifts, which are meant to be used in ministry / service.  Not every one of us are given the same set of gifts.  Some are better at writing, or building, crafting, baking, sculpting, reading, designing, and so on ...  if each of us were given the same set of gifts we would not need one another - and that is contrary to how God willed it.  He wants for each of us to serve and benefit from the gifts of each other. If Bob is a good carpenter, and Bill is a good architect, and Sam is good at math, and Tom is good at gardening - together they can build a fine home on an landscaped lot. But one without the other would be more limited than when each of the Spiritual Gifts are brought together. 

The Heart is used to described our hopes, desires, interests, ambitions, dreams and affections.  These are our passions. What matters to us.  The Bible says: "As a face is reflected in water, so the heart reflects the person."  The heart reveals the true essence of who you are. Not what others believe you to be, or what circumstances force you to be. But how God intended you to be. Are you a nurturer? Good with animals? Passionate about the rights of a particular group? Education? Writing? Health Care? These are your passions. Things which are of importance to you.  When combining your passions with your abilities, you can more easily see what your intended ministry looks like.

The Bible says: "Serve the Lord with your whole heart."  How do you know when you are doing this? Pastor Rick teaches us that when we are doing a job with enthusiasm and effectiveness, we are then serving with our whole heart.  You have heard it said that if you are going to make a career out of something - you are better to do it with something you love. The same is said when serving in your ministry. God wants passion, not duty. And when you are doing what you love to do - no one has to motivate you!

"God works through different men in different ways, but it is the same God, who achieves His purposes through them all." - 1 Corinthians 12:6 (PH)