Week of September 30
By Skip Heitzig
Last week I talked about not thinking more highly of yourself than you ought to think, from Romans 12. But what about the opposite tendency? Some people, rather than getting involved at their local church, hide behind the excuse of “Oh, I’m not really good at anything. I don’t feel confident enough.” That’s undervaluing yourself. Romans 12:3 tells us to “think soberly” about ourselves. The Phillips Translation says, “Try to have a sane estimate of your capabilities.” That means not too high, but not too low either!
What are your capabilities? What are you good at? How has God built you? How has God talented you? He’s given you spiritual gifts and he’s given you natural talents, and when you mix them together, what does it make? Find the gift God has given you and think sanely about your own capabilities, as it says here.
I personally believe that when God calls you to something, it’s based upon how He has built you and your personality—your strengths and limitations, as well as your spiritual gifts. You know, God isn’t an ogre who says, “I’m going to call you to something. Let me think...what is the one thing you would hate more than anything else?” God doesn’t do that!
In his book “Knowing God’s Will,” Blaine Smith says, “God exercises his providence in creating our personalities. I may trust that he has not allowed my particular personality to develop by accident but has fashioned my inclinations and preferences as a means of motivating me in certain directions. By looking to the desires that are most basic to my personality I can gain vital insights into where God is leading.”
So think soberly about yourself. Evaluate yourself—who you are, what you are like, and the things that you like. Consider your talents, your gifts, and the kind of faith that God has given you. As it says at the end of that verse, “as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.” Someone might say, “I’m going to China.” And another would say, “China! That would be tough!” “Yes, but I have faith that God’s called me there, so I’m going to go.” And the other might say, “Oh, I’d never go there.” God hasn’t given them that faith. But He has given them faith, according to His will, for something else.
And so if you want to know the will of God for your place in the church—God’s place for you—present your body to God, allow your mind to be transformed by Him, and then evaluate yourself honestly. He will direct you based on the strengths and weaknesses that you have. Believe me, He has a place for you!
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