Gifts to Share: (08.06.20)
A Bible Reading: 1 Corinthians 12:1,4-7
Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.
There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.
Last week we thought about a child coming downstairs on Christmas day and seeing lots of presents under the Christmas tree and discovering that the biggest present was for them, and we thought about God’s good gift to us being the Holy Spirit, a gift we all need to receive and to open.
To explore this image further, what if all these gifts, large and small are gifts from loving parents to their children. Does the size of the present matter if they are all good gifts, specially chosen for each individual child? Some valuable gifts come in very small packages.
There is a difference, though, between the gifts that God gives and the gifts that a parent of loved one might give. Many of the gifts that we receive, lovely as they are, are gifts from which only we will benefit. Gifts that we will wear, gifts that we will eat or drink, or gifts that we might use for ourselves. The gifts that God gives, on the other hand, are gifts that benefit everybody else.
In these verses from Paul’s letter to the church in Corinth, he talks about three kinds of gifts, gifts of service, gifts of works and manifestations, or gifts, of the Spirit, given to each for the common good
Each one of us has gifts that God has given to us. For some these gifts may be big and obvious gifts while for others they may be small and discreet, but all are chosen for us by God and all are given to us, not to indulge us or to make us appear important and impressive. They are given to us so that we can serve others, they are given to us for the common good.
What are the gifts that God has given you? It may be skills that you have that could benefit others, it may be time you can offer to others, it may be things you own that you could share with someone else, it may be experiences you have been through that you could share with someone going through similar experiences. The list is vast, God’s gifts to us are endless. Will you use them ‘for the common good’?
Father God, I thank you for the many ways you have blessed me and for the many gifts that you have given to me. Give me the grace to see them, not as things to own, but as things to share, so that others may be blessed.