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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Sunday, March 21

There are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit.
—1 Corinthians 12:4

Everyone is given spiritual gifts. Our particular gifts are to be used "for the common good"—in other words, in community. There are many gifts, and no single individual Christian is expected to have all the gifts of the Spirit. But the church as a collective body does possess the fullness of the gifts of the Spirit.

Accept your limitations. You don’t have all of the gifts of the Spirit. That's fine. You belong to the community that does possess all of the Spirit's gifts. So, maybe "faith" is very hard for you. No problem; that's just not your gift. 

But, the church has the fullness of faith. Maybe wisdom is your more natural spiritual gift. Wonderful! Exercise your wisdom in community, while your neighbor exercises her gift of faith.

For some people prayer is very difficult, if not impossible. Maybe you do not have the gift of prayer. Instead, you may have the gift of service. Go and feed the hungry, visit the hurting, do your gift of service. 

But you still belong to a community that prays, therefore you are praying through the community and through those who exercise their gift of prayer. It is the same Spirit exercising gifts through many individuals.

The job of the church is to enable each person to exercise his or her ministry—to activate their gifts for the common good. My job as a pastor, and that of our church's staff and leadership, is to give to each member of our congregation the authority and resources needed to exercise each person's particular gifts in ministry. That's true in every congregation.

What is your calling? How can the church help?

You have given me gifts and called me to ministry. I cannot do everything. I can do something. What I can do, with your grace, I will do. What would you have me do, Lord? Amen.

These Signposts originally appeared on explorefaith in 2005.