Recognizing Your Divine Giftedness

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The idea of being gifted carries certain weight. If a person says she is gifted, others might snub her and dismiss her statement as conceited. However, in 1 Corinthians, Paul suggests that the Spirit gives each person gifts (12.11). If we believe it, then we acknowledge everyone has gifts or talents.

In Matthew, Jesus tells the story of talents to illustrate what we are supposed to do with our gifts (25.14-30). Use them for God’s glory, not bury them or hide them away. Burying our talents is false modesty and deprives God of special skills.

One of the parents of the early church, Ambrose, writes about seeing the gifts and using them. In a symphony of biblical references, Ambrose writes:

Oh that I might safely say of you at that time: Lord, You gave me five talents, behold I have gained five other talents (Matthew 25.20) and that I might show the precious talents of your virtues! For we have a treasure in earthen vessels (2 Corinthians 4.7). These are the talents which the Lord bids us spiritually to trade with, or the two coins of the New and the Old Testament, which that Samaritan in the Gospel left for the man robbed by the thieves, for the purpose of getting his wounds healed (Luke 10.35).

Exposition of the Christian Faith, Book V, Prologue, Paragraph 10

Every person has gifts. We begin by thanking God for the gifts we have. Then, we return those gifts (talents, skills, resources, etc.) to God and ask the Lord to multiply them. Ambrose dreamed of hearing a divine affirmation for turning five talents into five more. We can all dream of such a blessing. Yet, if we never use our gifts, then God cannot multiply them.

I wonder how different the world would be if Christians recognized our gifts and committed our giftedness to God.

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