What a wonderful thought it is that Christ, through the Spirit has given each member of the church a spiritual gift. I hope that you are excited about using your gift for the common good of the church. I hope you are excited about where the Lord will take us as His body as we exercise His gifts. I hope you are excited about the spiritual growth that God will cause among us as we faithfully use the gifts He has graciously given.
It is good for us to be aware of the spiritual gifts God has given to the church and it is good to be excited about using those gifts. But in all of this, we must also make sure that we keep the proper focus and perspective. Spiritual gifts and the exercise of those gifts should never be about us. It is important to remember that fact. To think, “Look at us!”, “Look at what we are accomplishing through the Spirit!”, or “Look at the marvelous thing God is accomplishing through us!” is to have the wrong focus; a dangerous focus.
Our focus should not be on ourselves as we exercise our gifts, but on Christ. The Spirit of God’s focus is always on Christ! As Jesus said of the Holy Spirit, “He will glorify Me…” (John 16:14a, NASB). The Spirit’s role and desire is to glorify the Lord Jesus. That should be our goal and desire, too! As we use our gifts, we should never point to ourselves, but always to Christ.
Our focus should not be on ourselves as we exercise our gifts, but on serving and building up others in love. As Paul writes, “But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” (1 Corinthians 12:7, NASB). Paul also says, “So also you, since you are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek to abound for the edification of the church.” (1 Corinthians 14:12, NASB). Our gifts are never to be used for self-promotion (this was a major problem in the Corinthian church). Rather, they are to be selflessly used for the good of the whole, and to build up (edify) one another.
May each one of us zealously use the gifts God has given us through His Spirit, and let us be careful to keep a humble, service-minded, Christ-glorifying focus as we do.