Saturday, April 6, 2013

The Purpose Driven Life - Day 32

Day 32 - Using What God Gave You

Now that we've learned what our God-given SHAPE is, we need to know how to use it. Perhaps one of the most important lessons of the day is to not work against the grain of our SHAPE. When we attempt to serve in a way that does not fit in with our abilities, passions and experiences, it can be a complete waste of time not to mention frustrating.  Pastor Rick likens it to fitting a square peg into a round hole.  If you know that you cannot sing - it makes no sense trying out for your church choir.  Stick to musical worship from the pews! Equally, if you are not artistic, you probably should not be working on designing Church, posters, newsletters or pamphlets. Common sense - right? 

We are advised to be thoughtful when assessing our SHAPE - ask friends, coworkers, family members what they believe are your strengths.  Point out that you are not fishing for compliments, but really want the truth .... then compare their responses to your own self-evaluation list ... if you find traits that are agreed upon from both your list and your peer feedback - chances are you are on the right track.

Never be afraid to get out there and try something new.  You have your list now, but remember that what you can do today - you may not have been able to do ten years ago - or maybe you could do it but you just didn't know it yet.  You do not know everything there is to know about yourself even today. Life is growth. Evolving. And this is true with your gifts as well.  You will never know what you are good at until you get out there and try something new! Just remember that when trying something new - it can only go one of two ways, you will either love it and be great at it - or you will discover that it just is not your thing. And that is okay! Add it to your list of life experiences and move on.  The important thing is that you do not consider it a failure. This is a sure fire way to set your self up to fall.  Experiences come in both, good and bad.  Each are an opportunity to grow.

When you do find yourself in a ministry that you enjoy - and are good at, do not fall into the trap that Satan will inevitably set up for you.  This can happen in one of two ways - you will find yourself comparing yourself to others in your ministry - you will determine that you are doing better than they are and become complacent ... or you will find that they are doing better - quicker - more ... and become discouraged. Do not allow yourself to fall for this trap! Remember that it is not a competition.  Run your own race and do not concern yourself with the runner in the lane next to you. Remember, when running a race - the moment you turn your attention to what everyone else is doing - one of two things will happen - you will lose time ... or your will fall! Eyes forward at all times!  By the way, this is not only true in ministry, but also in life.

Don't be afraid to grow. When you first begin volunteering - you may discover a talent you did not know you had - or you may be using a known gift in your work. Either way, do not allow yourself to remain stagnant in your work. Pastor Rick reminds us that a good teacher can become a better teacher with time. And eventually become a master teacher with growth and experience.  

Master your gifts so that you will be in a position to offer God the best part of yourself. As He deserves only the best you have to offer!!

"Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and correctly handles the word of truth." - 2 Timothy 2:15 (NIV)