Maybe I am alone in this, but for a significant portion of my spiritual life, I longed for a "more spiritual" gift. Somehow I got it into my head that the talents and gifts that I had were not anything that could be used for God's purposes
I am an artist. I am good at gathering people. I love to cook and create. These are the gifts and abilities that I have been given, and y'all, at face value, these gifts and desires in my heart don't seem any kind of spiritual to me. Do they to you?
But could it be that God has graciously given me these exact gifts so that I could be used uniquely for His Kingdom? Could it be that He created ALL of us to be used in an impactful way for His glory - right where we are, with what we have TODAY?
As believers, we have placed weight on gifts just as we have placed weight on sin. Have we valued those who are on stage, those that are down front, those with their names in the bulletin over the people who are behind the scenes and perhaps just as important in making it all happen?
God has graciously pointed people out to me in scripture who are the behind the scenes in the bigger Bible stories that we've been taught for years in Sunday School. Have you ever thought who built the Ark of the Covenant? Have you ever wondered about the people chosen to build Solomon's ridiculously amazing temple for God?
I had actually never thought about it before. But when I started reading through the Old Testament, God made these people peer from behind the shadows and come to the front of the story and graciously said, "Becky - this is you! Don't you see how significant these roles are to Me?"
Gosh, God is so sweet that way.
In Exodus, after God instructed Moses with a million and one details of how to build the tabernacle and the Ark of the Covenant, God handpicked a man named Bezalel out if his wood shop. God told Moses, "I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship to make artistic designs for work in gold, in silver, and in bronze and in the cutting of stones for settings and in the carving of wood, that he may work in all kinds of craftsmanship. ... in the hearts of all who are skillful I have put skill, that they may make all that I have commanded you." Exodus 31:1-6
Bezalel - a man you've probably never heard of before - was just doing his own thing, honing his craft. But God had very intentionally placed the skill into his heart - coupled with the Spirit of God. He loved God and loved working with wood. And God used the skill of this man to build the vessel to carry the covenant He made with His people!
God's gifts are always significant! We may not understand them, they may not be valued by the world as much as others but they are from the Lord!
Are you doing your thing today? Has God placed some sort of skill in your heart? Has He given you a love for a craft, for gathering people, for baking bread? Do not diminish living for Jesus and doing your thing as short of doing the very ministry that He has graciously given you to complete!
As King Solomon was building the biggest temple ever (my words, not scripture's), He went to a King adjacent to him and acknowledged that no one knew how to cut Cedar like the Sidonians.
Another beautiful example in scripture of God using specific gifts to carry out His greater purposes!
Could it be that not everyone was meant to be a David or a Paul, but instead God created each of us with our own set of talents that, when surrendered to the Lord and carefully fostered in obedience to Him, can be used for His eternal purpose?
This is my takeaway from all of this, y'all :
Love Jesus. And then do what you love.
That's it. That's what it all boils down to. We are all women who are on mission - but we are all also women who have been created specifically and on purpose! We are not just wives, the boss at a corporate company, moms, daughters, friends. We are His daughters who have been lovingly made in His image to reflect Him in all things - even our creativity.
My husband was meant to be down front. He is one of the few people who has been given the gift of leading in the public realm. I am blessed beyond measure to support him. It is my privilege, my honor, my blessing.
Of course I love being the "woman behind the man". But more than that, I want to be the woman in God's plan.
I want to be the kind of woman who honors other women in their giftings - not the kind of woman who wants their giftings. I want to be the kind of woman who takes everything she has and lays it down - daily - for the Lord to use immediately. However small or big it might seem. I want to find honor and significance in that. In Him. In His gifts.
"Every good and perfect gift is from above." James 1:17
Our talents are from above, friends! They are perfect in His eyes. We have to remember that we were intended for perfection. It is humanity and sin and the Fall that has made us fall short. It is everything about that shortness that makes us devalue our gifts.
Let's lay down our talents today before the Lord and allow Him to continue to perfect them, day by day - year by year. Let's stop weighing them out and instead USE them!
If you cook food - take a meal to someone. If you write - encourage others with your words. If you gather people - host a block party. If you paint - start doing it! If you have the gift of organizing - bless someone with that today! Hone your craft. Scripture tells us that we should live a life where nothing is wasted. Let's not waste our gifts one more second, y'all!!
Lay them down and then let's do something!