Everyone to show a precious gift that someone has given to them.
What was the best present you were ever given and why did you love it so much?
In this session we are going to look at gifts that are given to us. You may not feel ‘gifted’ but by the end of the session you will have had the opportunity to consider your gifts and how you can use them for God’s kingdom.
Many schools run ‘Gifted and Talented’ programmes. The idea is to help develop the gifts and talents children have been given helping them to excel in these. However, not all children make the grade to be part of such a scheme. Does this mean they are less gifted? No, not at all! There are some gifts that are difficult to pinpoint from an academic level, yet they ‘make the world go round’, to name but a few; love, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness.
Are you a gifted person?
What has been the biggest gift someone has given to you? Not in the form of a present but in the form of themselves?
Read 1 Corinthians 12:1-11
Ask members to list the spiritual gifts again out loud.
You may think ‘oh yes, that’s the gift I’ve been given’ or quite possibly ‘oh no, I don’t want that gift!’
Do you like the story of Jonah? We can often think of it as a Bible story for children, and about a person who simply moaned a lot and did not get his own way. That may be true to a certain extent. However, did Jonah possess a spiritual gift? Yes, Jonah had been given the gift of prophesy. God had chosen him, but he wanted to run away! So badly did he want to run, that he ended up on a boat with men he did not know, thrown overboard, swallowed by a huge fish, spat out onto land and so the story continues. The message of this story could possibly be ‘Beware when running from your God-given gifts’!
Moses did not feel that he was an eloquent man, yet learned that the words he spoke, the miraculous things he witnessed, his faith in God and his wisdom to follow God were all gifts from God. You may say, ‘Well I’m no Moses!’ Good, you do not need to be, but you do need to accept your gifts and use them.
You may acknowledge your gifts and use them for God, however, there is a distinct possibility that you have more gifts that are untapped! Growing older does not mean that we use our gifts less; it means we have the wisdom of age on our side to say ‘What next God?’
Have you ever had a moment when you know deep inside you that you need to say something to someone; perhaps a word of encouragement, reassurance or even a verse of scripture? This could be a gift of knowledge.
Perhaps you have been in a situation when you have felt uncomfortable with people and you know that you need to be praying for God’s protection upon that situation as there is a battle of spirits going on in the heavenly realm. You are discerning of the spirits! Ever had a moment when you just knew that you had to do something even though everyone else thought you were mad? You have the gift of faith!
God gives us gifts for certain times in our lives. Many years ago my friend knew she had to lay her hands on me and pray for healing. She had never done it before but she knew she had to. From that moment there was a journey of healing that took place in my body.
The only thing that stops us from accepting God’s gifts is our own insecurities. We doubt that God could use us in such a way. We worry what others may think. What a waste of God’s beautiful gifts. The gifts of the Spirit are given for all who believe in Jesus. When we use our God-given gifts we bring unity and diversity through the body of the church.
Read 1 Corinthians 12:12-14
It is time to use your gifts. If you think someone else will do something, or you are not the right age, or someone will do it better, then it is time to get Satan off your back and look to Jesus for his guidance.
‘Take my life and let it be, consecrated Lord, to thee, take my moments and my days, let them flow in ceaseless praise.’
Salvation Army Song Book 623
Look back at the spiritual gifts described in 1 Corinthians 12 and discuss the following:
Which of these gifts have you seen at work in your life or the life of others?
Is there a gift that you do not understand?
How do spiritual gifts help build the body of the church?
Take a quiet moment to pray and seek God’s leading for which gifts he has to give to you.
Pray for courage to discuss this with a trusted friend.