Share Those Gifts

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And serve each other according to the gift each person has received, as good managers of God’s diverse gifts (1 Peter 4:10, Common English Bible).

If God was the owner, I was the manager. I needed to adopt a steward’s mentality toward the assets He had entrusted – not given – to me. A steward manages assets for the owner’s benefit. The steward carries no sense of entitlement to the assets he manages. It’s his job to find out what the owner wants done with his assets, then carry out his will. – Randy Alcorn

“God didn’t give me any gifts.” Said a woman sitting beside the bed of a comatose dying friend. “I can’t play the piano, or any other instrument. I have a horrible singing voice. I can’t draw beyond stick figures. The thought of standing on a stage and doing public speaking scares me to death. I don’t have any gifts. God forgot about me with that one.”

I had known the woman for some time. She was an excellent cook. She was a great mom and grandmother. It was also not the first time I had come to visit a church member in that kind of situation. Far more often than not, she was there when I got their and stayed their after I left.

I continued the conversation. “I think you are wrong. I see many gifts in you.” I went on to outline what I’ve written above.

“Oh, that? Those aren’t gifts. That’s just something you do. I’m talking about real gifts. You know what I mean, you sing some and you play the guitar.”

“I like to play the guitar. I am really not that good, but this isn’t about me. The gifts you have are important. I can take you to two dozen people I know who would have loved to have grown up with a mom like you, including one in this church. The one in this congregation had a mom at home but she drank heavily and left her kids to raise themselves. It wasn’t a great place to grow up. There were times there was nothing to eat because the mom had spent all their money buying alcohol. Being a great mom is a gift. Having compassion and sharing that with the world is a gift. Don’t ever deny your gifts. What you have is important.”

What I said then applies to all of us. Don’t deny the gifts God gives to you. God gave them to you for a reason, to share with the world. And, just because you don’t think it is a gift does not mean it isn’t a gift. If there is something you can do, from cooking to music, to sitting beside the bed of a dying friend, all those things are important. God has touched you. You are called to take what God has given to you and use it to give blessing to others.

Could that mean I need to practice my guitar more, so I get better, so I could share that gift with more people. It is a possibility. Whatever God’s gift(s) is for you, hone the skill and share it with the world. What good is a gift if we fail to use it to bring glory to God.

Have a great day in the Lord.

Grace and Peace,
Keith

Copyright 2016, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Author:

Spirita Spiro (Esperanza for "Spirit's Breath) is rather new in my life. But the blog is not. I began writing a blog several years ago. It lived under the title, "The Pastor Ponders." Over the years I have tried several different names and "The Pastor Ponders" always seemed to fit best. I am trying again with Spirita Spiro. For 27 years I was a full-time pastor in the United Methodist Church. This year, August 2018, I semi-retired (I can't actually retire quite yet) and began teaching social studies. It is something I have always wanted to do and if I was going to do this, I needed to make it sooner rather than later. So, I made the move. I thought with the career change there also needed to be a name change to the blog and other things, such as spiritual direction. Spirita Spiro is my attempt to share some of my thoughts. I often share what I am thinking with my dog "Bishop," but he keeps his thoughts to himself. He will even go to sleep sometimes while I am sharing my thoughts with him. The truth is, if it doesn't involve getting his ears scratched, his belly rubbed or some kind of treat, he really doesn't care. I will say this for him, he never argues with me or tells me I am wrong. So, I decided to share some of my thoughts with whoever might come across this blog in their ramblings around the Internet. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 27 years as a full-time United Methodist pastor. Most recently I served as pastor of First United Methodist Church in Sweeny, Texas. I have also served United Methodist congregations throughout East Texas including rural Madison County (Elwood UMC), Lovelady (First UMC) and Kennard (Center Hill UMC), Canton (First UMC), rural Smith County (Mt. Sylvan UMC and Union Chapel UMC), Grapeland (First UMC), Tyler (Pleasant Retreat UMC), Santa Fe (Aldersgate UMC), Freeport (First UMC) and Oyster Creek (Oyster Creek UMC), Diboll (First UMC), and now Sweeny (First UMC). My wife Cindy and I have been married for over 40 years. We have two grown sons. Wayne and his wife Nikki and all our grandsons (Kaleb, Noah, and Jaxon) live in Southern California. Christopher and his wife Morgan and both our granddaughters (Jenna and Natalie) live in Tyler Texas. I enjoy preaching and all aspects of preaching from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading, playing the guitar as well as a bit of drawing. I have spent quite a bit of time over the past two years working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I sing bass with a local barbershop chorus called The Coastalaires. I have also recently begun doing a little wood carving. I also enjoy playing with Bishop, something he likes a great deal better than listening to my thoughts. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, specializing in Microcomputers from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, Texas, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. When I was a student at Carolina, the school was in Iron Station North Carolina. They have since relocated to Manassas Virginia (Yeah, go figure, a school named Carolina geographically in Virginia). This blog is mostly devotional writing, but there are other things here too. Just about every week I will either post my sermon manuscript or a video of the worship service. On occasion, I will post something I see in society. Occasionally I write a short story, a poem, or a song and will post it here too. I will say this, my motivations for writing this blog are really selfish. I write it to get what I am thinking out of my head and onto something a bit more permanent. They say, after all, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. And, should you desire, you can one-up Bishop and actually tell me what you think. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. With Joy and Thankfulness, Keith Sweeny, Texas May 2018

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