Spiritual Gifts

I spent thirty years believing one of my spiritual gifts was a character flaw that I needed to fix. I’ve since discovered that I want the gift, and it can bless my life and those around me. What are your spiritual gifts? Are there any you don’t recognize because you believe they are weaknesses?


Video transcript (edited):

I have a gift of sensitivity; I'm sensitive to other people’s emotions and my own emotions and spiritual things. What’s interesting about this today is that I spent the first thirty years of my life hating my gift of sensitivity. Growing up, I heard that I was too sensitive, I needed to be tougher, I reacted too much, I felt too deeply, and I needed to change. I internalized those messages.

So I spent thirty years of my life trying to be less sensitive. I even received a revelation at some point, I think I was 14, teaching me that sensitivity was one of my spiritual gifts. But even then, those negative messages that I had internalized were so strong that the revelation didn't matter. I accepted sensitivity as a spiritual gift, and yet I continued believing it was a problem and I needed to change.

So when I was thirty years old, I heard a lesson on the parable of the talents. As I listened to that parable I thought to myself, ”Yes, I want to bury that gift of sensitivity. I am so sick and tired of it and it has hurt me so much. I want to bury it just like the servant in the parable who receives one talent and buries it in the earth.

In the parable, the master comes back to the servant and asks, "What have you done with your talents?" And because the servant has buried it in the earth, the master takes away the talent and gives it to somebody else.

I imagined Jesus Christ taking away my talent -- my sensitivity -- and giving it to somebody else. And for the first time I began to want my gift. I imagined myself saying to Jesus, "No, no, wait a minute! There are things that I would miss if I lost that gift!"

This shift was such a turning point for me! Finally, instead of seeing the negative and the ways that this gift made life difficult, I began to see the ways this gift enhances my life, blesses me, and allows me to bless other people. I saw for the first time that this gift allowed me to be sensitive to my children and to my husband. Finally, I was able to embrace it.

I've spent the last ten years cultivating this gift. I’ve prayed and worked with God so that it's not debilitating and the gift is growing in my life. I love it!

Then today in church someone taught this parable again, and I thought about other gifts that I might also be “burying.” One that is directly applicable to this blog is that I spent my life believing that I talk too much and I need to talk less. But I'm learning now that talking is another spiritual gift of mine, a gift of being able to express myself and even needing that expression. I am built to talk. I need to use it to be fulfilled.

I also need to use it for God. He wants to use our spiritual gifts! He wants your gifts and He wants mine. They're different and He can use all of them. There’s space for every single one of us… no, not even just space! There is a NEED for every single one of us in the kingdom of God. I believe that.

I'm passionate about this because my experience has been that Satan, the enemy of God, wants us to believe that our gifts are liabilities! He wants us to believe they are weaknesses. He wants us to believe that we should fight them, bury them in the ground, hate them and be afraid of them. So there's your clue to finding them and seeing them for what they are.

So what are your spiritual gifts? Or, perhaps, what have you been criticized for? What do you hate most about yourself? Could it be one of your gifts? Perhaps if you saw it from another perspective. You know, if you're looking at it now as a rain cloud, can you flip it inside out to see its silver lining? Can you see the value there? Because it is there.

God created you and he created me and we are beautiful and divine and glorious and we have gifts from Him, gifts that are beautiful and divine and glorious. Can you find them?

Then, what does it look like if you embrace those gifts, especially if you've been afraid of them, avoiding them, or rejecting them like I did for so long? What would happen if you embraced them? What would it look like to use that gift to serve the God we love?

That's all for today.

Keep shining!


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