Some sermons are more fun to me than others (fun isn't the main purpose, so its okay when they aren't). Today's "Dirty Jersey" message about SHARING our spiritual gifts was just fun for me as preacher. To my fellow pastors who read this blog - I wonder if you also find your sermons varying in mood and intensity from month to month like I do.
I asked everyone at Lake Forest to "not be ignorant about spiritual gifts," as I Corinthians 12:1 says. So for all Christians, here's how I think you best discover and use your spiritual gifts to cooperate with Christ's purpose of 'building up' the church (Ephesians 4:11-13).
1. Believe God's Word that you have a spiritual gift as a 'manifestation of the Spirit' in you (I Cor. 12:7), given for the 'common good' of the church. Begin to open your eyes to learn about it. Read relevant portions of the New Testament.
2. Jump into serving on one ministry team at your church that appeals to you at least a bit, and begin to serve.
3. Take a spiritual gifts test. Here's the one posted with our sermon discussion notes from todays sermon: http://www.churchgrowth.org/cgi-cg/gifts.cgi?intro=1
4. After you've gotten an idea of your gifts from the test, and served for a while, ask a person or two you serve in church with "do you see these or other gifts in me?"
5. Watch for: spiritual fruit and joy (which will be present in some measure when you serve using your unique gifts).
All throughout my twenties I knew the three spiritual gifts God had given me, but not unitl my thirties, after serving in a lot of ministry, did I know which was primary. For me primary is the gift of encouragement. Secondary is teaching. Third is leadership.