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Spiritual Gifts 1

When I was in college, one of the topics that fired my growing desire to become a teacher of the Bible was spiritual gifts. Part of that interest was no doubt youthful enthusiasm about discovering my place in the world and in God’s work. “What is God’s will for my life?” is a common question with which Christians often struggle at that point in their lives.

Another part, smaller but still present, was a desire to make sense of the charismatic movement as it was embodied by similar enthusiastic young Christians who grew up in that faith tradition. Finally, there was confusion about spiritual gifts because virtually nothing of substance was said about them in the church of my youth—possibly out of fear that saying too much might turn us into those aforementioned charismatics!

Twenty-plus years later, I can’t say I have it all figured out. I still wonder about God’s will for my life, I still struggle to understand some of the things my charismatic brothers and sisters do, and I still shake my head at how little most churches do to foster an understanding of spiritual gifts. I can say, however, that learning about spiritual gifts has been an unqualified blessing for me. In the next few days, I’ll blog some of my reflections on the topic.


  1. Used to wonder about God’s call. Had friends waste a lot time trying to figure out what God wanted them to do next. I then read 1 Corinthians 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” I think that goes hand in hand with “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.”

    So my philosophy today is that whatever I am, whatever my situation is, I will seek to do everything for the Glory of God. Everything else seems to fall into place after that.


  2. D. P. says:

    I think a lot of Christian high school/college kids (at least of a particular kind of upbringing) go through a phase where they imagine God’s will as this vast blueprint with every detail nailed down to the nearest nanometer. It can be kind of devastating when they realize life doesn’t work that way. I think you have a very sound philosophy, Mike.


  3. Can you guess that I am not as Calvinistic as I used to be???


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