But what determines our purpose?
Do we seek the path of others?
Do we say....Well, if she's writing, then I should be writing? If he went on a mission trip, then why shouldn't I become a missionary?
Do we compare ourselves to others to find our purpose?
I think sometimes, maybe too often, we do.
We forget that we are fearfully and wonderfully made.
We forget that God broke the mold when He created each of us.
We forget that there is no one on earth like us.
We look at others and we covet. We want what they have. We want their journey, their purpose, their calling.
Sometimes, its our own sin that causes that. Sometimes others draw us into that covetous attitude. Consider this....Have you ever looked down on someone because they weren't serving God the way you were? Do you think you are holier because you have gone on a couple of mission trips? Do you stick your nose in the air as you walk by those who can't put more in the offering? Do you make people feel bad because they aren't called to do the same thing as you?
We have all been given special gifts. The bible says so. 1 Corinthians 12:4-7 says,
The apostle Paul went on to discuss the various spiritual gifts God has blessed us with. He's called some people to be teachers and others to be preachers. He's called folks to encourage and others to heal. He reminds us that as the body of Christ, we all have different jobs. We can't all be feet. We can't all be ears. We can't all be arms, legs, hands, or mouths.
In her book, Let's All Be Brave, Annie Downs talked about her faulty understanding of being a Christian and fulfilling your calling. She said at one point she believed that you were "ranked" based on your service. For instance, missionaries were top ranked while "normal" jobs were lower ranked. You could still be a Christian, but you just weren't as awesome if you weren't sacrificing more than others. She realized this sort of thinking was wrong. We can't all be missionaries. We can't all be teachers or praise and worship leaders. God has called us all to do different things, all equally important.
In the book of Numbers, God gave Moses instructions for service. The Kohathite clan were to prepare the Tabernacle for moving. Their duties were to cover the items, the most sacred objects so they would be protected when the camp moved. The Gershonite clan would be responsible for general service and carrying loads. The Merarite clan would also be responsible for carrying the loads during the moves (Numbers 4:1-49).
Doesn't sound so glorious or glamorous does it? Might sound a little ridiculous like Baby from Dirty Dancing, "I carried a watermelon." Nothing awesome about that is it?
It's the Lord's work.
God didn't grant us all the same gifts.
We have to seek to find our strengths and our weaknesses. Then we must commit to using our gifts to serve God.
Can you sing? Join a choir or praise band (Justin Beiber.....If you really want to live like Jesus, maybe you should sing songs of worship).
Can you organize? Join a committee. Ooohhh, the activities committee. Plan events and activities for your church to minister to others, for your church to grow in their relationship with Christ. Plan Trunk or Treat and Block Parties.
Can you teach? Teach a Sunday school or VBS class.
Can you shop? Buy items for the Angel Tree or Operation Christmas Child. Take needy kids shopping for new clothes now that the weather is changing.
Can you sew? Craft blankets for the elderly or homeless.
Can you cook? Bake something for someone. Our local Methodist Church treated my family to their Manna Meals while my husband served in Afghanistan. Our home church, those good ol' southern Baptist women, have delivered fried chicken, Happy Meals, and banana pudding for us in times of need. Christ can be felt through the taste buds......Taste and see that the Lord is good (Psalm 34:8).
Can you landscape? Help an elderly person clean up the yard since he can't get around like he used to. Plant flowers or bushes at your church.
Can you build? Help someone whose siding is falling off the house. Replace those shingles. Fulfill that church Honey Do List.
My point is.....there's always something to do.
We want to sit around and gripe and complain about what needs to be done. We expect others to step up and get the job done. If no one does it, we fuss about it. If some does it, but not to our liking, we fuss about it.
Stop fussing. Stop complaining.
Whatever you do, do it in the name of Jesus Christ.
We can all do something.
What is your spiritual gift? Isn't it time you do something with it?