[This post is duplicated at Loom & Wheel.] 

 

Following his pattern of developing ideas through questioning, Craig Groeschel asks three questions to help readers of Chazown begin finding their spiritual gifts. What is your passion? What is your impact? What is your secret belief? Each of the questions deals with the things that you do—the activity of your life.

First, what is it that you do with passion? What is it that you enjoy doing or suspect that you might enjoy doing? I find that communication is the thing that I have a passion about. I look for ways to communicate, to say the right word at the right time. I find that I have the same desire in my writing—to use the best word to communicate the best possible message at the perfect time. I like to think that once in awhile, I hit the mark.

What, then, do you do that seems to have a significant impact on the world around you? This is a tough question for me because as my mother has often observed, I am my own biggest critic. I’ve discovered that while sometimes my words do have the impact that I desire, it is more often time that impacts those around me. People seem to be more aware that I have spent time with them than they are to remember anything I say. This is especially true during times of crisis. Few if any people remember the words said in a prayer when they are going into a time of surgery, but most remember that you were there and that you offered a prayer.

Finally, what is it that you secretly believe that you can do—even if you’ve never tried it? Although I’ve journeyed down the road of self-publishing (in essence, paying up-front the costs of getting your book between covers and in hard copy form), I still feel that I’ve got the stuff to get my stories published. Groeschel asserts that you should do what you secretly know you can do. He follows up with another assertion that if you don’t do it, if you keep putting it off, you’ll lose the ability to do that which you secretly think you can do. (That’s double-talk for saying, “Put up or shut up.”)

Here’s another author’s perspective on the same idea:

A Dream Deferred

by Langston Hughes

(Langston Hughes homepage)

What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore–
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over–
like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?

Once you have found these things, you are better equipped to find your spiritual gifts—those things which God has given you that will help you further the work of the Kingdom. Like other authors, Groeschel has found an assessment tool which will help followers of Jesus discover their gifts (based on a listing developed by the writers of the assessment tool). Here are my gifts based on that tool:

Apostleship – adaptability, with an emphasis on missions and cross-cultural witness.

Shepherding – care, nurture, and guiding.

Leadership – purpose and goal setting.

Knowledge – insight.

Teaching – able to communicate ideas.

Coupling this with the core values that I developed earlier, is it any wonder that the most energized I have been in my career path has been during those times I have been living in ministry? Serving as the pastor of a church is a hand-in-glove fit for me. I am able to use my gifts to address my personal values in an effort to build God’s kingdom. What a rush!

Advertisements