No Such Thing as an Ungifted Christian
by Adam Flaugh
We are to use our spiritual gifts as good stewards. First Peter 4:10-11 says:
As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Charisma (from charis, which means grace) is the Greek word from which we translate “gift.” This special grace gift that each believer receives at conversion is not earned, but freely given to us by God. That means there is absolutely no cause for pride or room for boasting in our abilities since we did nothing on our own to acquire them. “As God has allotted to each a measure of faith” (Romans 12:3), He freely bestows gifts according to His purposes.
In and through these freely given gifts, the “manifold grace of God” is displayed. The word “manifold,” comes from a term meaning various kinds or colors. This multi-faceted design of God is what enables the church to effectively function in harmony; for though there are a variety of gifts, there is but one body (1 Cor. 12). Whether you are a mouth that speaks or a hand that serves (1 Pet. 4:11), together we can do exactly what is needed. When all the individual parts of the body function as God designed, the body accomplishes what God desires.
When Christians employ their gifts in serving one another, they are being good stewards of God’s provision. The word “stewards” is translated from a compound word meaning literally: “house” and “law.” In God’s household (the church), His expectation is that each of His children would be a good manager by employing their particular gift. The fact that we are entrusted with this stewardship means we will be held accountable for how well we carried out our responsibility. Keep in mind that we will not be held accountable for how someone else used their gift, but for what we did with our own gift.
Notice again how you are to employ your spiritual gift: “in serving one other.” The gift God has given you is not for you, but for others. It is not about obtaining praise and personal satisfaction, but it is for the building up of others in the church. “Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve” (Matt. 20:28), so we should become the servant of one another if we wish to glorify God through Jesus Christ.
Do you know what your spiritual gift is? If you are not involved in any ministries of the church, it can be difficult to determine how you are gifted. A good way to find out is to try different areas of ministry and see how effective you are in those areas. Asking for feedback from godly Christians in the church can also help you determine how God has gifted you.
Are you employing your spiritual gift? It is helpful to remember that the exercise of your spiritual gift is not about you. It is about obeying God and glorifying Him through Jesus Christ as we serve one another. When we keep God’s glory and the building up of the church in the proper perspective, we can find great motivation to employ our gift. We can also find great joy in that service.
As children of God, we have the honor and obligation to serve every other member of our Father’s household with the multi-faceted grace He has bestowed on us. May we be found to be trustworthy stewards of those gifts!