Tuesday 14th March 2017
This week, we continue our look at the “Purpose Driven Life” – Purpose 4 – You were shaped for serving God.
Using what God gave you
Since we find ourselves fashioned into all these excellently formed and marvelously functioning parts in Christ’s body, let’s just go ahead and be what we were made to be. ROMANS 12:5 (MSG)
What you are is God’s gift to you; what you do with yourself is your gift to God. DANISH PROVERB
GOD DESERVES YOUR BEST.
He shaped you for a purpose, and he expects you to make the most of what you have been given. He doesn’t want you to worry about or covet abilities you don’t have. Instead he wants you to focus on talents he has given you to use. When you attempt to serve God in ways you’re not shaped to serve, it feels like forcing a square peg into a round hole. It’s frustrating and produces limited results. It also wastes your time, your talent, and your energy. The best use of your life is to serve God out of your shape. To do this you must discover your shape, learn to accept and enjoy it, and then develop it to its fullest potential.
The Bible says, “Don’t act thoughtlessly, but try to find out and do whatever the Lord wants you to.” Don’t let another day go by. Start finding out and clarifying what God intends for you to be and do.
Jesus’ parable of the talents illustrates that God expects us to make the most of what he gives us. We are to cultivate our gifts and abilities, keep our hearts aflame, grow our character and personality, and broaden our experiences so we will be increasingly more effective in our service.
Paul told the Philippians to “keep on growing in your knowledge and understanding,” and he reminded Timothy, “Kindle afresh the gift of God which is in you.” If you don’t exercise your muscles, they weaken and atrophy. In the same way, if you don’t utilize the abilities and skills God has given you, you will lose them. Jesus taught the parable of the talents to emphasize this truth. Referring to the servant who failed to use his one talent, the master said, “Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents.” Fail to use what you’ve been given and you’ll lose it. Use the ability you’ve got and God will increase it.
Paul told Timothy, “Be sure to use the abilities God has given you…. Put these abilities to work.” Whatever gifts you have been given can be enlarged and developed through practice. For instance, no one gets the gift of teaching fully developed. But with study, feedback, and practice, a “good” teacher can become a better teacher, and with time, grow to be a master teacher. Don’t settle for a half-developed gift. Stretch yourself and learn all you can. “Concentrate on doing your best for God, work you won’t be ashamed of.” Take advantage of every training opportunity to develop your shape and sharpen your serving skills. In heaven we are going to serve God forever. Right now, we can prepare for that eternal service by practicing on earth. Like athletes preparing for the Olympics, we keep training for that big day: “They do it for a gold medal that tarnishes and fades. You’re after one that’s gold eternally.” We’re getting ready for eternal responsibilities and rewards
Have a great day!
Pastor Peter Jordan (adapted from the “Purpose Driven Life”)