May 20, 2011


1 Peter 4:1-11

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace …
1 Peter 4:10


I remember when I was invited to my first potluck dinner at a church in Michigan. At first I didn’t understand what it was all about. I learned that every family had to bring a dish to share with the rest of the guests. It could be any kind of food— from the main course to salads and desserts. Joined together, our dishes made for a delicious dinner—not to mention a wonderful fellowship time. I was very impressed.

When dinner was over, I approached the pastor to compliment him on developing this unique communal experience. He looked surprised. After a pause, he explained to me that such dinners are common in North American communities.

In today’s verses Peter calls us to serve others with whatever gifts we have. In some sense our service is like our contributions to a potluck dinner. Is your specialty a favorite casserole? Or perhaps your signature dish is that special fruit salad! At a potluck, everyone is encouraged to bring their best. Similarly, when it comes to the ministry of the church, everyone has a special talent. Some are called to preach the Word; others are called to teach or to lead social ministries—or to use their gifts in other ways. By doing all these things, we are extending God’s grace “in its various forms.” We are also praising our heavenly Father.

What are your gifts? Are you using them for God’s glory?

Lord, help us to praise you in unity. Give us wisdom to use our gifts to serve others as we work in ministry. Amen!

About the author — Sergei Sosedkin

Rev. Sergei Sosedkin is the Russian-language ministry leader for ReFrame Ministries. He is a native of Moscow, Russia. As he oversees the Russian-language ministry, Rev. Sosedkin works from our office in Grand Rapids and in various locations in Russia.

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