Best Gift(s) Ever
By Cheryl McCloud
Yet another year is upon us. It is so cliché to say the years seem to be flowing faster and faster. Surely 2015 started only a few weeks ago and 2016 is months away. But the calendar doesn’t lie and it’s time once again to hang a new calendar on the kitchen wall (yeah, I’m old-fashioned that way!)
This year, I find myself meditating about gifts. Not the type covered in glittery paper, topped with bows that were unwrapped on Christmas Day, but the type that are given from our Father.
“So it is with you. Since you are eager for gifts of the Spirit, try to excel in those that build up the church.” 1 Corinthians 14:12
We all have gifts and talents He has given us. As a new Christian, I really didn't believe that I had gifts that He wanted me to use to glorify Him.
I wasn’t a great singer (my threatening to sing is taken as a threat by family!) I had no talents to draw or paint. And while I did play the flute and piccolo years ago, I wasn’t a virtuoso by any stretch of the imagination. (What do you mean play by ear? Where’s the sheet music?)
My brother ended up getting all the math genes so I was left with words. How could I glorify Him with that? Somehow the entire Bible just slipped my mind on how He used men to instruct and guide us thousands of years later. Not to mention all the devotions that have spoken into my life and encouraged or motivated me so often.
OK, so I don’t think He’s calling me to write a new chapter of the Bible, and while I hope that you might be able to relate to some of my struggles and victories in this blog, I still felt myself asking if there’s something more. Can anyone relate?
Why do we struggle so much with accepting not only that He’s given us gifts, but also that more often than not, those gifts are obvious to those who know us?
I think it’s because we try to overthink it. We focus on the physical, like I have, instead of those that are a little harder to quantify. When someone is having a hard time, do you seem to know what to say?
For others, it’s the ability to sense when someone is going through a difficult time and providing a calming presence, assuring them they are not alone.
Do you see a need and quietly jump right into it, most often without being asked? Do you have the patience and ability to teach and play with small children, the sick, and the unlovely?
These are all precious gifts that He’s given to us. And every single one of them glorifies Him. And the good thing is that they’ll never wear out or have to be exchanged for a different size.