brailoftheheart asks: Hey Unka Glen, would God give someone a gift, and take it away, if he wants, for the person’s benefit or good?? I read somewhere in Romans that the gifts and calls of God are irrevocable, but a couple friends of mine think God takes away gifts. Does he? I’m really not sure now.
Unka Glen answered: There are two theories on spiritual gifts. The first is that God gives you gifts to make you unique, so you’ll have something special about you, so that you can feel good about yourself, and feel that you’re a special little snowflake, and in this way you will know why you aren’t doing a bunch of things you otherwise should be doing— it’s because it isn’t within your giftedness.
Then there’s the other theory.
In this second way of looking at things, you are special because Jesus shed His blood for you, and nothing else can compare with that, so nothing else is required for feeling special. In this view of things, we should be thankful for the shedding of blood and forgiveness of sins, and that thankfulness begs a certain question within us: “what can I do for you, Lord”.
Now it turns out that the VAST majority of Christians are lost somewhere between this forgiveness, thankfulness, and a desire to serve. Just those three steps into the walk are where most Christians are stuck. Many simply can’t accept that they are fully forgiven, others can’t be thankful for their forgiveness, because they’re focused on being obedient enough to be worthy of that forgiveness (like that’s ever gonna happen), and when it comes to serving God, well that’s just a place where few find themselves.
And for the record, I’m not talking about full-time ministry, at all. I’m talking about anything, from helping out with Vacation Bible School, to driving an old lady to church, to setting up chairs for Sunday service, to short term missions, you name it. Anything that moves the Kingdom forward is important.
And in this second view of things, when you find yourself serving, you will be given the gifts you need to fulfill that mission. It makes sense then, if God puts you on an entirely different mission, then he would give you different gifts to face that challenge.
Romans 11:29 says, “God’s gifts and His call are irrevocable.” I think the simplest way of breaking that down, is to say that God’s plans for us aren’t changed by our sins. They aren’t changed by any circumstance. When you’re gone doing your thing, He’s still ready to proceed with His plans for your life. God’s calling for your life may change (in fact it will likely evolve over time), but the fact that you are called will never change.
At some point in your walk, it becomes less about the choice between right and wrong, and more about the choice between good, and right.
It may be good to go to China to spread the Gospel, but the right thing is to follow where God leads, and who knows, that little 8 year old kid you talk to today in sunday school class, could become the next great missionary to China. Take ahold of the gifts that God offers to fulfill whatever mission He has before you. It’s ALL important.
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