Tag Archives: Truth

You Don’t Have To Be Here To Be Here!

6 Nov

I was watching a movie the other night and was immediately inspired by a scene where a popular school teacher had died. Several children were sitting in a group, reminiscing about good times and feeling down and sad. They were interrupted by another teacher who wanted to encourage them. He said to the group,  “I know you are really sad that your teacher died but don’t you know you don’t have to be here to be here? Every time you give your knowledge away or what you have learned – every time you give something to someone – you give a little part of yourselves to them. You have a little bit of everyone who has given into your life. They are here with you, you just have to know where to look.”

Wow! So many thoughts and feelings flooded my heart and my mind. That is an awesome truth. First, I thought of my Mother who died a few years ago. I miss her so very much, yet so much of her is still with me. I  have many of her material things, but I don’t drag them around with me to keep her near me. My Mother is always – always – with me. She’s in my heart. I hear her voice when I do something I know she wouldn’t like. I hear her sweet, loving words to me when I am discouraged or hurt. I can see her face in my mind’s eye. So many of the things I learned came from watching her and listening to her. I hear many people say,  “I’m turning into my Mother.” Many of us say that as though it were a bad thing when, in fact, it can be a very good thing. That’s where the statement “. . .you just have to know where to look” comes in.

Just think about how many people have become a part of us – our parents – our siblings – our friends, and so on. We glean from each and every one of them, even if it is to determine we don’t like certain things they do, and we surely don’t want that part of them to dwell in us. More than likely, we even catch ourselves picking up certain traits of others – repeating their phrases or their reactions.

Unfortunately, deposits into our lives by others are not always positive.  Some of the deepest hurts and fears left as residue from them may  keep us bound by vows we have made as a result of the pain they have caused. They are still with us. That means we are looking at the wrong place in our hearts. (We might say, “I’ll never let anything like that happen to me again,” or “I learned my lesson – I won’t do that anymore”). Surely there are also good things deposited into us by others yet we tend to focus on the negative things and not the positive. We then begin to put walls around our hearts and push others away based on what one person did to us. Over the years, the deposits made by others can even keep us away from the destiny that God has prepared for us.

The Scriptures tell us Eccl 5:5-6 ” It is better not to vow than to make a vow and not fulfill it. 6 Do not let your mouth lead you into sin.” NIV   We should re-think any vows that we may have made and ask God to forgive us. We can’t assume that because one person has hurt us that others will. That is when it is vital that we “. . . know where to look.”

My mind races with how many ways this affects us. I’ve had a good, long life. I’ve experienced a great deal of pain and loss. (See how I mentioned the pain and loss first?) I have also been blessed with so much good – more good than bad. When I think of the pain and loss, I think of the people who are here with me, even though they aren’t here with me! On the other hand, when I say certain things or experience some feelings of fun and joy, I think of others who are with me, even though they aren’t here with me. So many of life’s experiences have made me who I am today.

The most important fact of all is that God is with me – and He is here with me even though I can’t see Him – He is here with me! There is never a time He isn’t with me. He lives in me – He never leaves me. He isn’t just a memory. He’s alive and He is with me always – at all times – good and bad. He talks with me – He listens to me – He helps me to overcome the negative things that have been deposited in my life by others. His is the influence I need to live by – nothing else – good or bad. My memories of others are part of my life forever, but they don’t make me who I am. God does that.

If you don’t know the God of Abraham, invite Him into your life. Ask Him to forgive you of your sins and to come and live in your heart. He is an amazing God – Jesus said in John 14:6 “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. NIV

Only God can see to it that our  hearts are cleansed and free from everything that would keep us bound.

 

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Please Hear What I’m Not Saying

29 Jul

I did not write the following three paragraphs. I don’t remember where it came from but I read it years ago and it touched my heart. I pray that this will speak to all who read it:

As Christians we are expected to appear victorious. We are expected to be on a continuous spiritual high. We are expected to fly, as the sparrows, undaunted into the storms of life. After all, we are God’s children.

We wear masks to cover our broken spirits, and our emotional wounds. The need for affirming one another is crucial to our process of becoming real, not phony or hypocritical, people of God.

We must be affirmed and we must affirm others. Otherwise, we miss one of the main concepts of the New Testament – to love one another and to bear one another’s burdens.

Please Hear What I’m Not Saying

Don’t be fooled by me.

Don’t be fooled by the face I wear

For I wear a mask. I wear a thousand masks —

    masks that I’m afraid to take off

    and none of them are me.

Pretending is an art that’s second nature with me

But don’t be fooled, for God’s sake don’t be fooled.

I give you the impression that I’m secure

That all is sunny and unruffled with me

    within as well as without,

    that confidence is my name

    and coolness my game,

    that the water’s calm

    and I’m in command,

    and that I need no one.

But don’t believe me. Please!

My surface may be smooth, but my surface is my mask,

My ever-varying and ever-concealing mask.

Beneath lies no smugness, no complacency.

Beneath dwells the real me in confusion, in fear, in aloneness.

But I hide this.

I don’t want anybody to know it.

I panic at the thought of my weaknesses

and fear exposing them.

That’s why I frantically create my masks to hide behind.

They’re nonchalant, sophisticated facades to help me pretend,

To shield me from the glance that knows.

But such a glance is precisely my salvation,

my only salvation,

and I know it.

That is, if it’s followed by acceptance,

and if it’s followed by love.

It’s the only thing that can liberate me from myself

from my own self-built prison walls

from the barriers that I so painstakingly erect.

That glance from you is the only thing that assures me

of what I can’t assure myself,

that I’m really worth something.

 

But I don’t tell you this.

I don’t dare.

I’m afraid to.

I’m afraid you’ll think less of me, that you’ll laugh

and your laugh would kill me.

I’m afraid that deep-down I’m nothing, that I’m just no good

and you will see this

and reject me.

 

So I play my game, my desperate, pretending game

With a facade of assurance without

And a trembling child within.

So begins the parade of masks,

The glittering but empty parade of masks,

And my life becomes a front.

I idly chatter to you in suave tones of surface talk.

I tell you everything that’s nothing

And nothing of what’s everything, of what’s crying within me.

So when I’m going through my routine

Do not be fooled by what I’m saying.

Please listen carefully and try to hear

what I’m not saying.

Hear what I’d like to say

but what I can not say.

 

I dislike hiding.

Honestly.

I dislike the superficial game I’m playing,

the superficial phony game.

I’d really like to be genuine

and me,

But I need your help, your hand to hold

Even though my masks would tell you otherwise.

 

It will not be easy for you.

Long felt inadequacies make my defenses strong.

The nearer you approach me

The blinder I may strike back.

Despite what books say of men, I am irrational;

I fight against the very thing that I cry out for.

You wonder who I am?

You shouldn’t –

for I am every man

and every woman

who wears a mask.

Don’t be fooled by me.

At least not by the face I wear.

– Anonymous

You May Have The Gift of Prophecy If . . .

12 Oct

SPIRITUAL GIFTS (23)

The gifts we are discussing in this series are the Spiritual Gifts from Romans 12:3-8:

  • Rom 12:3-8
  • 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body , and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7 If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8 if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. NIV
  • The word “Prophecy” can bring about many different reactions in people. The main reason is because it is misunderstood. Some of the misunderstandings include the belief that prophecy passed away after Jesus came. Others just simply believe that prophecy is not necessary today.
  • The dictionary gives us a couple of different definitions: 1) A statement of something that will happen in the future; 2) The power or ability to know what will happen in the future; 3) An inspired utterance of a prophet; 4) the function of a prophet; specifically: the inspired declaration of divine will and purpose. (Merriam-Webster)
Inspiration is a technical term for the Holy Spirit’s supernatural guidance of those who received special revelation from God  . . .
The end result  . . . the truths which God wants His people to know  (from Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary).
Definition – PROPHECY, PROPHESY, PROPHESYING
Propheteia ^4394^ signifies “the speaking forth of the mind and counsel of God”
  • • “Though much of OT prophecy was purely predictive, see <Micah 5:2>, prophecy is not necessarily, nor even primarily, fore-telling.
  • •It is the declaration of that which cannot be known by natural means, <Matt. 26:68>
  • •It is the forth-telling of the will of God, whether with reference to the past, the present, or the future, see <Gen. 20:7; Deut. 18:18; Rev. 10:11; 11:3>….
  • •(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)
  • . . . But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.  (2 Pet 2:1) (KJV)
  • •The difference is that, whereas the message of the prophet was a direct revelation of the mind of God for the occasion, the message of the teacher is gathered from the completed revelation contained in the Scriptures.”
  • •(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)

More characteristics of the Motivational Gift of Prophecy:

They can sometimes “see” something going on in someone else’s life
They are  able to discern and foresee the consequences of that decision
They are interested in correcting the decision – NOT their feelings -NOT their attitude
They are NOT interested in whether they accept him/her or not. . .Just in getting that thing corrected in your life before you really blow it!
They are NOT interested in the details – they want to keep you from making a mistake
According to Strongs and Brown, Driver, Briggs “Discern” means:
  1. To know
  2. To perceive
  3. To perceive and to see
  4. To discriminate, to distinguish
  5. To know by experience
  6. To recognize
  7. To have knowledge, to be wise

The person with the gift of Prophecy has a very strong sense of discernment. God teaches them how to discern truth. He uses His Word from Scripture to teach this discernment. The better a person knows the Word of God, the sharper their discernment will become.

They have:

  • The capacity to identify, define and hate evil – Romans 12:9, I Timonty 3:7
  • The willingness to experience brokenness to prompt brokenness.
  • The dependence on Scriptural truth to validate their authority.
  • A desire for outward evidence to demonstrate inward conviction – I Peter 4:11
  • They look at outward expressions or verbal responses. – I Corinthians 14:25
  • They have a directness, frankness and persuasiveness in speaking.
  • They are honest and want others to be honest. (Titus 2:8)
  • They have a concern for the reputation and program of God
  • They have an inward weeping and personal identification with the sins of others.
  • They care for others.
  • They have a real love for the lost.
  • They have an eagerness to have others point out their blind spot(s).
•(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)

In addition to my own material I have included quotes from the following:

  • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
  • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
  • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
  • Biblesoft Libraries
  • Sandy Trice
  • David Francis

The Motivational Gift of Prophecy

5 Oct

SPIRITUAL GIFTS (22)

The gifts we are discussing in this series are the Spiritual Gifts from Romans 12:3-8:

    • Rom 12:3-8
    • 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body , and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7 If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8 if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. NIV
  • The word “Prophecy” can bring about many different reactions in people. The main reason is because it is misunderstood. Some of the misunderstandings include the belief that prophecy passed away after Jesus came. Others just simply believe that prophecy is not necessary today.
  • The dictionary gives us a couple of different definitions: 1) A statement of something that will happen in the future; 2) The power or ability to know what will happen in the future; 3) An inspired utterance of a prophet; 4) the function of a prophet; specifically: the inspired declaration of divine will and purpose. (Merriam-Webster)
  • I am extremely interested in this particular gift because it is my Motivational Gift. As you might imagine, I don’t like being misunderstood, any more than anyone else. But, since I have lived it, I am hoping that I can enlighten those who many have questions about it.
  • We are not discussing the “Prophet” as in the ministry gift; nor or we discussing the ability of some to “prophesy”, as discussed in I Corinthians, 12:6-8. There are many gifts spoken of in God’s Word. We are discussing the motivational gifts as given to us by God so that we can help others. The gifts are all given by the Holy Spirit. They are given as God determines.
  • To clear this up a little more – a prophet was (and I believe still is, at times) called by God to speak of things to come. In the Old Testament, God used His prophets to speak to His people. The Priests were delegated the task of speaking to God for the people – and the prophet to the people from God. Today, as Christians, we can talk directly to God and His Word tells us He speaks to us. ( . . . my sheep hear my voice).  There are some gifted with the ability to prophesy (rhymes with amplify). This means that they are given a divine utterance by God to His people, usually in an unknown language (called “tongues”). If God calls on someone to prophesy, there should be someone to give an interpretation. The interpretation can come from the same person who gives the prophecy, or by another.
  • Our subject is somewhat different. We are talking about a different kind of gift when we talk about the motivational gift of prophecy. So, for now, that will be our focus. I will write more on the other gifts after we complete this series.
  • Now, for the Gift of Prophecy – it is one of the speaking gifts.  Today, it is associated more with powerful preaching and teaching. This doesn’t mean that every teacher or preacher has the gift of prophecy, nor does it mean that every person with the gift of prophecy is a preacher or a teacher.
  • The person with this particular gift goes “out of their way” to exercise one or more of these basic points:
    • An analysis of the current situation from God’s perspective
    • The consequences of continuing in that path
    • The need for change/repentance
    • The promise of God’s grace and restoration if the change in direction is made
  • A person with this gift, if they are dedicated to obedience to God, will do everything in their own power to walk in obedience to God. They will hunger for God’s Word and they will want to make sure that whomever they are listening to (spiritually) is staying in line with God’s Word. They will spend much time in God’s Word and it will become their standard for everything. (This obviously won’t happen over night!) Along with this gift is usually a strong gift of discernment – the ability to determine truth.
  • It is important to say that many of us have seen and/or heard of some things that are just not proper when it comes to things we see or hear in church. I believe that is why many are fearful when the word “gifts” or “prophecy”, etc. are used. In other words, we are all human. We are not supernatural – it is GOD who is supernatural. But, we are His body on this earth. We yield ourselves to Him and we walk with Him and learn of His ways. We are not just “all of a sudden” zapped with the ability to operate in God’s gifts. We also need to know that we cannot use these gifts from God just anyway we want to. There are definite characteristics of using God’s gifts in the Spirit or in our own flesh. If your Spirit is in tune with God’s Spirit, then He will help you and guide you. Your inner spirit will be taught of the Lord, by the Holy Spirit and through His Word. Also, the things you do will be in line with God’s Scriptures. If they are not – you are definitely not following the Spirit of God.That being said, let’s move forward.
    1. Prophecy does not usually involve foretelling – predicting the future – as much as it does forthtelling – forcefully speaking the truth.
    2. The word “proclaim” is perhaps a better word than preach to describe what a person with the gift of prophecy does.
    The person with the Gift of Prophecy will show obvious signs in the following ways:
    • Typically their ministry is a public one (Again, not every public ministry has the gift of prophecy).
    • They are not as comfortable in smaller groups as others
    • They prefer speaking to larger groups than ministering one on one as do those with other gifts
    •  They are tuned in to how God views situations, especially if evil or hypocrisy is present
    •  Issues-oriented; usually have an opinion about everything! Not fearful to tackle tough issues.
    •  Proclaim God’s truth with a passion, even if they must do so alone.
    • Their message is one of urgency; tend to expect an immediate decision or response (Repent NOW!)
    • Deeply concerned about the reputation of the church
    •  Quick to give advice; sometimes impatient with people and their problems
    •  Speak with authority, especially about the Bible
    • Sometimes viewed as negative; have to work to be positive
    • They edify (build up), encourage (exhort), and console (comfort)
    • Their message is incomplete if it stops short of these goals
    • This gift is intended primarily for believers, though an unbeliever who hears their message may come under conviction
    • Often accused of talking too much, but just can’t seem to help it!

    In addition to my own material I have included quotes from the following:

    • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
    • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
    • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
    • Biblesoft Libraries
    • Sandy Trice
    • David Francis

Are You An Explainer?

2 Sep

SPIRITUAL GIFTS (19)

The gifts we are discussing in this series are the Spiritual Gifts from Romans 12:3-8:

  • Rom 12:3-8
  • 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body , and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7 If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8 if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. NIV
There are four speaking gifts
  • •Prophecy – Proclaimers/God’s Loudspeakers
  • •Teaching – Explainers/Guardians of Truth
  • •Exhortation – Encouragers/”How to” Persons/Concerned with the way we act
  • •Pastor/Shepherd/Teacher – Guardians of the Flock
        We are focusing today on the gift of TEACHER, with Luke as our Biblical example. Let me say first that all teachers do not have the motivational gift of teaching. And all people with the gift of TEACHING do not teach. We are discussing teaching as it relates to the spiritual gifts given by the Holy Spirit as a part of unifying His body.
  • Luke’s purpose in writing was “That thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed.” –Luke 1:4  Teachers have a need to validate truth – to clarify statements which have been made by others. Often they give teaching credentials before speaking and request them from others before listening to them.  Luke emphasized that he was an eyewitness, a qualified minister, and “had perfect understanding of all things from the very first.” –Luke 1:1-3
Other traits of the motivational gift of a TEACHER:

They generally present truth in a systematic sequence.

  • Luke emphasized his chronological approach . . . “to set forth in order . . . From the beginning… to write unto thee in order” –Luke 1:1-3

They delight in researching and reporting as many facts on a subject as possible.

  • Luke’s Gospel is the longest Gospel. It includes material left out of the other Gospels. He emphasizes the completeness of his work. –Acts 1:1

They emphasize the importance and accuracy of reporting.

  • Luke gives precise descriptions of events, conversations, circumstances, and physical conditions, such as noting a “great fever” not just a fever. –Luke 4:38

They are alert to factual details which escape others.

  •  Luke’s account is filled with more details of names, offices, cities, dates, events, and side points than the other Gospels.

They have a tendency to validate new truth by established systems of truth.

  • Luke not only relates Christ’s words to Old Testament prophecies, but relates his writings to other Gospel accounts. –Luke 1:1-3)

They usually remain silent until information has been heard, observed and discussed. They are not impulsive.

  • Luke is conspicuous in the Gospel by his silence; none of his statements are recorded.

They exercise diligence and endurance.

  • Luke demonstrated his faithful determination by remaining with Paul in prison until the end. “Only Luke is with me” (II Timothy 4:10-11)

In addition to my own material I have included quotes from the following:

  • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
  • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
  • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
  • Biblesoft Libraries
  • Sandy Trice
  • David Francis

About Spiritual Gifts. . . I Do Not Want You To Be Ignorant! I Cor. 12:1

11 Aug

SPIRITUAL GIFTS (13)

The words “Gifts or Spiritual Gifts or Ministry Gifts” as they relate to Scripture can cause some to squirm. These terms, along with others from Scripture, can cause confusion and bring up uncomfortable feelings. Some just don’t want to hear anything about them at all. Truthfully, I can relate. I was brought up around these things and I was uncomfortable much of the time.

I want to dispel some of those fears and misunderstandings, to the best of my knowledge and with the help of others who have written about these things.

There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit.  God does not want us ignorant concerning these things. (1 Cor. 12:4) Because of all the confusion and fear surrounding the mis-use of these gifts and the fear surrounding the unknown, we allowed the enemy to steal some of God’s most valuable resources for our edification.

If you have had any of these experiences or have heard of them please realize that God never forces Himself on us. His gifts are given freely and are to build us up and to heal us physically, emotionally, spiritually – and in every other way.

The fears that have kept us from God’s best should be dealt with in prayer and in reading God’s Scriptures for clarification. I am going to do my best to explain these gifts, the way they differ and the way they are used today. There are many who believe that God’s gifts were only for Bible times and are not effective today. That is a big lie of the devil to prevent us from receiving God’s best for our lives.

  • There is no evidence whatever that the Gifts ceased because the Lord withdrew them. (Gordon Lindsay, All About the Gifts of the Spirit)
  • A Scripture that has been commonly used by those who hold the position that the Gifts of the Spirit have ceased is I Cor. 13:8-10.
  • Here we are told that prophecies, and tongues, and knowledge shall cease, or pass away. Just one glance at the Scripture shows however, that the period referred to is not this age at all, but the perfect age which is yet to come! (Lindsay)

The gifts we are discussing in this series are the Spiritual Gifts from Romans 12:3-8:

  • Rom 12:3-8
  • 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body , and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7 If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8 if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. NIV

Following are Scriptures relating to the other gifts God has given to us and we will discuss them in a future series.

  • Eph 4:9-13
  • 10 He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.) 11 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets , some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. NIV
  • 1 Cor 12:1-13
  • 12:1 Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant. 2 You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols. 3 Therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.
  • 4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.
  • 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.
  • 12 The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body — whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free — and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. NIV

The next Motivational Spiritual Gift we are going to discuss is the gift of PROPHECY. That’s one that turns some off. Many believe that prophecy is no longer relevant today. However; God still gives this gift to many and it is His will that they use it properly. To use it in any way other than directed by God is a very dangerous thing to do.  There are characteristics you will recognize by those with this gift and you will be able to discern whether they are using it properly or not.

We are not speaking of “Prophet” as in the ministry gift or  the gift of prophecy found in   I Corinthians 12, we are learning about the gift found in Romans 12:6-8.

The Gift of PROPHECY:

Today this gift is primarily associated with powerful preaching, however; all preachers do not have the gift of prophecy nor do all persons with the gift of prophecy preach.

The person with this particular gift goes “out of their way” to exercise one or more of these basic points:
  • An analysis of the current situation from God’s perspective
  • The consequences of continuing in that path
  • The need for change/repentance
  • The promise of God’s grace and restoration if the change in direction is made

I believe a person given this gift is tested to the max. They cannot be used effectively unless they are well versed in God’s Scriptures and have learned strict obedience to God.

God knows how to train us for the gift He has given us. That is one of the duties of God’s Holy Spirit. He teaches us to “hear” His voice as He speaks to our hearts. This is for everyone, not just a select few. God’s Word tells us that if you are one of His sheep, you hear His voice and the voice of another you will not follow.

  • John 10:26-27
  • 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. NIV

Some of the characteristics of the gift of PROPHECY are as follows:

  • Prophecy does not usually involve foretelling – predicting the future – as much as it does forthtelling – forcefully speaking the truth. Forcefully is a strong word. What it means here is that the Prophet motivated person wants to make sure God’s Word is understood and that there are consequences to disobeying it.
  • The word proclaim is perhaps a better word than preach to describe what a person with the gift of prophecy does
  • Typically their ministry is a public one
  • They are not as comfortable in smaller groups as others
  • They prefer speaking to larger groups than ministering one on one as do those with other gifts
  • They are tuned in to how God views situations, especially if evil or hypocrisy is present
  • The are Issues-oriented; usually have an opinion about everything! Not fearful to tackle tough issues
  • They proclaim God’s truth with a passion, even if they must do so alone
  • Their message is one of urgency; tend to expect an immediate decision or response (Repent NOW!)

Recognize Your Motivation

22 Jul

Spiritual Gifts (7)

We are now ready to get more specific with the individual motivational gifts. As you meditate on them you may recognize some of your personal characteristics and those of your friends and family. It may take a while for you to identify your gift right away, so be patient and give yourself plenty of time. When you do recognize your gift, realize that it is your gift for life and that as you grow stronger in the Lord, your gift will also mature.

Train yourself to be sensitive to your reactions to your likes and dislikes and your motivation for doing what you do. For example, if you are asked to help someone move, and you agree to help – examine how it makes you feel. Are you agreeing because you feel obligated or because you really enjoy helping people? If you really want to help someone because you enjoy helping others, chances are that your gift may be “Service”. If you do it mainly because you are obligated or for any other reason, you can probably mark “Service” off your “Gift” list.  Keep in mind that we are not excused from “Service” just because we don’t have that particular motivation!

Motivational Gift of PROPHECY – Characteristics

  • Strong desire to understand the Bible and God’s Word to His people
  • Strong discernment
  • Able to forsee the consequences of decisions made
  • Strong desire to help others to correct their bad decisions – (not their feelings and not their attitude)
  • Not interested in whether or not they are accepted by others, just that others know the truth and don’t make choices that will bring them more problems

Ways the Gift of PROPHECY can be used:

  • Teaching
  • Moral Concerns
  • Church Council
  • Counseling
  • Personnel Committee
  • Church Officer
  • Group Committee Leader
  • Worship Committee
  • Prayer Groups

Motivational Gift of TEACHING – Characteristics:

  • Strong desire to clarify truth
  • Desire to search out and study God’s Word in detail so they can validate the truth
  • Carefully investigates the Word of God
  • Very interested in words and the way they are used
  • God-given interest in getting details correct

Ways  the the gift of  TEACHING can be used:

  • Bible Teaching
  • New Member Training
  • Mission Education
  • Vacation Bible School
  • Sunday School
  • Church Training
  • Church Council

Motivational Gift of ADMINISTRATION – Characteristics:

  • The ability to see the overall picture
  • Can clarify long-range goals
  • Can see and understand what needs to be done
  • Knows who can do the job the best
  • Likes to appoint the individuals to do them

Ways the Gift of ADMINISTRATION can be used:

  • Records and Statistical Data
  • Church Finance
  • Financial & Budgeting Resources
  • Office Administration
  • Insurance Committee
  • Priority Planning
  • Church Council

Motivational Gift of SERVICE – Characteristics:

  • Can become grieved when they see the person they are serving squandering their time and wasting it on minute things
  • Greatly delighted in giving of themselves to serve when they see the other person is investing their life in worthwhile projects
  • They are willing to invest service in your life in order to help you get what you want out of life, then you, in turn, are going to be motivated to do more
  • Has the gift of giving of themselves in order to help someone else to succeed in whatever their interest is

Ways the Motivational Gift of SERVICE can be used:

  • Hospital Ministry
  • Deacon Ministry
  • Benevolence Committee
  • Social Ministries
  • Missions Committee

Motivational Gift of GIVING – Characteristics:

  • Gives more and expects less
  • Ready and willing to give of their finances to see that a project is accomplished
  • Will make personal financial sacrifices in order to give a large amount of money

Ways the Motivational Gift of GIVING can be used:

  • Stewardship Committee
  • Moral Concerns (Poverty, Politics, Family)
  • Outreach Ministry
  • Church Finances
  • New Ministries

Motivational Gift of EXHORTATION – Characteristics:

  • Has the ability to see your potential and desires to motivate you to reach that potential
  • They have discernment and may sometimes seem nosey
  • They usually make good counselors
  • They want you to learn something and move on to the next step of action

Ways the Motivational Gift of EXHORTATION can be used:

  • Vocational Guidance
  • Youth Ministry
  • Counseling
  • Ministry to Families
  • New Member Training
  • Church Leader Training
  • Nominating Committee

Motivational Gift of MERCY – Characteristics:

  • Reaches out with genuine love which uplifts, soothes and heals those who are hurting
  • This gift keeps others on their toes because even if words are not spoken, they can pick up on the feelings and attitudes of others
  • Has a greater vulnerability to deeper and more frequent hurts because of lack of love

Ways the Motivational Gift of MERCY can be used:

  • Prayer Groups
  • Hospital Ministry
  • Couseling
  • Benevolence
  • Homebound Ministry
  • Social Ministries
  • Mental Health
Some of this material was quoted from the following:
  • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
  • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
  • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
  • Biblesoft Libraries
  • Sandy Trice
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