November 14, 2017

Loving Means Using My Gifts

1 Peter 4:7-11

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. . . . Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others. . . .

—  1 Peter 4:8, 10

Loving others includes using the gifts provided by God’s Spirit. Each of us has talents and abilities we can use to bring glory and honor to God. In addition, we have spiritual gifts “for the common good” (1 Corinthians 12:7). As we find in Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12, 1 Peter 4, and other passages, there are many gifts of the Spirit: prophecy, faith, giving, encouragement, wisdom, hospitality, and more. Each of us has at least one gift, and with it we can serve others and testify to God’s grace.

Whatever gifts we have need to be used. That begins by recog­nizing and acknowledging what gifts we have. We need to discover our giftedness so that we can use it to express love. If we are reluctant or prefer to be modest in acknowledging our giftedness, let’s remember that God equips those whom he calls.

Whatever gifts we are given are to be used for the sake of others. Our communities and our families need us to use our gifts. The effectiveness of the body of Christ is diminished when even one person decides to “sit on the gift” entrusted to them. As an ancient confession of the church, the Heidelberg Catechism, puts it, “Each member should consider it a duty to use these gifts readily and cheerfully for the service and enrichment of the other members” (Q&A 55). Do you?

Father, help us to recognize the gifts you have entrusted to us for the sake of serving others. We want to honor you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

About the author — George Vink

Pastor George Vink has served as a pastor in the Christian Reformed Church for more than 30 years in British Columbia, Montana, Michigan, and California. He and his wife, Shirley, have four married sons and nine grandchildren.

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