Sunday, August 10, 2008

SPIRITUAL GIFTS

Next Sunday, August 17, I will preach at Spirit Song and at 10:55 on the Spiritual Gifts. Four passages in the New Testament talk about Spiritual Gifts: Romans 12: 3-8;1Corinthians 12: 1-11, 27-31; Ephesians 4:11-12; and, 1 Peter 4: 9-11.



Every Christian is a minister and is given at least one gift to be used in ministry. The following Spiritual Gifts are listed in the New Testament:

Wisdom

Compassion

Knowledge

Healing

Administration Discernment

Apostleship

Teaching

Shepherding

Helping/Assistance

Faith

Evangelism

Miracles

Servanthood

Prophecy

Exhortation

Leadership

Tongues w/Interpretation

Giving

The above list of Spiritual Gifts is a compilation of those listed in the New Testament. There are other gifts, I think, that the Holy Spirit has given to the church. No gift is any more important than the others. The Spirit has given to the Body of Christ, the church, the gifts that are needed to do the work of Christ in the world.


Now, over the next few weeks we (the Natural Church Development Team) will be making available a Spiritual Gifts Inventory that we would like for everyone to take to determine their gifts. Some of you may have already taken such an inventory, but we encourage you to join us in this effort.

Two inventories will be available through your Sunday School Classes. There will be a Short Form and a Long Form, so to speak. The short form will give you feedback about your gifts in a simple way. The Long form is a more extensive, in-depth, look at your gifts.


Once you have taken the inventory and discovered your gift/gifts, we invite you pray about where God will use your gifts. Many of you are already using your gifts for God’s glory in and through Bethel Church.



Our structure in the church may provide a place for you to serve on a committee or mission team, at the Bethlehem Center or soup kitchen. However, God may also be calling you to use your gift/gifts in the creation of some new ministry for which you don’t need our permission.


We will ask you over the next month to give us some indication if you would like to serve on some church planning or mission team, finance, trustees, etc. But, we hope that you will feel free to dream about what God is calling you to do.


As we begin to think, pray and study about our Spiritual Gifts, we don’t mean to imply that ministry is not now going on.


We do want to encourage all of us to see ourselves as God’s

ministers with a ministry to do. We hope that you will use this as a time to reflect in some depth about your own calling.


We aren’t doing this because we need bodies to fill positions in the church. We are doing quite well with that already. Our goal is help each person identify their gifts so that the Body of Christ might be enhanced.


We hope that you will share your ministry gifts with others in your Sunday School Class. Share how you feel about your discoveries.


If some of you find that your gift is Evangelism, then let us know. We will be forming a new Evangelism Team this year.


If you need any further guidance, the church ministry staff and the Natural Church Development Team are ready to assist you. This article will appear on my blog (http://denichols.blogspot.com), along with other material about Spiritual Gifts, plus some online Spiritual Gifts Inventories that you may use instead of the ones we will give you.


If you’re not in a Sunday School Class, we will make some inventories available in worship.

We invite your prayers and your support in this effort at moving our church forward.


In Christ,

Dave Nichols

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Welcome

Thanks for checking out my blog. I'm new to this, as you can probably see. But, I, like you, have convictions and ideas worth sharing. I hope this will be an opportunity to connect with others who are Christian and/or religious. I am happily United Methodist. I am committed to the basic teachings of our church, and to the compassionate outreach to the world.

I hope these pastoral ponderings will generate something in you that is hopeful.
Blessings!
Dave

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About Me

A graduate of Newberry College and Duke University Divinity School.  I have served as a pastor in the United Methodist Church since 1975.

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