Making Church Matter Scripture

Building the Body of Christ

January 17, 2010

There are different kinds of spiritual gifts  but the same Spirit                                                                                                                   I Corinthians 12.4-7

You have a spiritual gift. So do I. Every Christian does. 

The New Testament discusses many different spiritual gifts and nowhere does it even give a complete or definitive list.  The lists we find there are exemplary, not exhaustive: faith, service, healing, helping, wisdom, compassion, leading, understanding, knowledge, sharing, discernment, speaking in tongues, prophecy, giving. They are given to you by the Holy Spirit, to build up the Body of Christ. 

You have a spiritual gift, something beyond your abilities and talents, a way God wants to use you to bring people closer to him, and this gift (or gifts, because you can have more than one) can be activated in simple service, here in your local church community. 

For some of you, it may be greeting people as a member of our “Host Team.” The rest of us could look at that and say, that’s just a simple thing that anyone can do, which is true but when you do it, you release your spiritual gifts and God shows up in a special way. For some of you, its working with children in our children’s programs or teens in our student program. The rest of us could look at that and say, that’s a mighty simple thing to do, which it is, but when you do it, you activate your spiritual gifts and God shows up in a way that God was not present before.

The core principle is that each of us have special abilities from God that God uses to bring people to himself and these abilities are not in competition with one another, but work together. We are not to think we are better than one another because we have different gifts: they’re from God. Everyone has a spiritual gift, but to know it and develop it and to experience it, you have to use it.

But that’s not even half of it…because until you start using your spiritual gifts, there are certain things you will never know or understand about God and there are certain things you will never know or understand about yourself. When you fail to use your spiritual gifts, your relationship with God is probably going to remain tenuous and elusive, your spirituality is probably going to be superficial and maybe even self-serving. But, when you put your faith to work by using your spiritual gifts, you get to experience God at work through you. And that is one of the most awesome experiences ever, it is an experience that God wants to use to shape your character for eternity. 

That’s why we emphasize service in ministry, series after series, season after season; that’s why I love to talk about it so much: because it can bring you to a whole new level.

The other thing about spiritual gifts is what they can accomplish not only through us, but among us. Everything we know about the local church community, going all the way back to the Church in Corinth, is that when enough people get together and start using their spiritual gifts to build the Body of Christ…God shows up in great big ways. God likes to be around people who are using their spiritual gifts to build the Body of Christ. 

Last week we announced that because we have run out of room at optimum times on our campus, we’re expanding in February, to the Crowne Plaza Hotel.  We will be hosting a worship service for people in our community who don’t go to church, maybe don’t even like church.  To do that we’re going to need a lot more help, in fact, we’re looking for hundereds of our members to step forward at this time and become member ministers.  We need your help now more than ever because we really want God to show up in a great big way.  

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