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Different for a Reason

We’re continuing to look at the spiritual aspects of serving the Lord from First Corinthians.  We know that the Holy Spirit wants to speak through the church.  How He does that is different in each of us.

Paul brings this out using four important words.

There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit.
1 Corinthians 12:4

The first thing we’re told is that the same Holy Spirit gives different gifts.  It’s important that we understand what this means.

There are two words in the New Testament that are translated as gift.  The first is the Greek word doron.  This one is more in line with the way we give presents in our society.  It’s a gift that once given, you can do with it what you want.  You can use it, sell it, give it away, or take it back to a store for a refund.

That’s not the word in this verse.  This Greek word is charismata.  This is a gift that the giver still has some strings attached.  The giver tells you how it will be used.

“I’m giving you this money, but it’s only to buy that new suit you wanted.”

So the Holy Spirit has different gifts that He gives the instructions on how they’ll be used.  Nobody can just do as they please in the Spirit.  We must all be Spirit led.

There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.
1 Corinthians 12:5

The next group of differences concerns our service.  There are different kinds of servanthood, but we all bow to the same Lord.

We need to see that we’re not all called to serve in the same way.  How I serve Christ may be very different than the way you serve Him.  Because of this, I can’t judge you because you’re not just like me.

There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.
1 Corinthians 12:6

Next, we’re told that there are different ways that God works in and through us.  The Greek word used here is where we get our English word, energy.

In the natural, there are different forms of energy.  They’re always active in the world around us, whether we realize it or not.

It’s the same with God.  The verse literally says that He works all in all.  God is not a respecter of persons.  It doesn’t matter if you’re a new Christian or have been walking with The Lord for many years.  He wants to work powerfully through your life.

Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.
1 Corinthians 12:7

The final word Paul uses is the bottom line of our walk in the spirit.  The Holy Spirit wants to manifest in each of us.

Unfortunately, the word, manifestation, has become a part of our church vocabulary.  We rarely use it in normal talking.

The Scriptural word means to appear.  It also means to be bright.  It’s like a flashing neon sign that catches your attention as you’re driving by it.

The Holy Spirit in us wants to be like a sign, flashing His presence in our lives.  He wants it to be evident to all those around that He’s actively working through you.

These four things, in combination, make each of us a very unique individual in Christ.  As we come together in agreement and unity, the Spirit is able to do mighty things through His church.

Question: What makes you unique in the Lord?

© 2019 Nick Zaccardi

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Posted by on June 12, 2019 in Ministry, Power of God, Spiritual Walk

 

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You are Better than a Tree

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA“I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist.  Return to me, for I have redeemed you.”
Sing for joy, O heavens, for the LORD has done this; shout aloud, O earth beneath.  Burst into song, you mountains, you forests and all your trees, for the LORD has redeemed Jacob, he displays his glory in Israel.
Isaiah 44:22-23

On Christmas Day – at least in my part of the world – I woke up to snow in the air.  It was a beautiful sight to see a new blanket of white on the frozen ground.  I was then blessed to spend the morning opening presents with my wife and children.  God is so good!

Sometimes it just seems like everything is right with the world.  “The hills are alive with the sound of music.”  We look around, and all of nature seems to be singing God’s praise.  Actually, this is a product of our attitude.  It happens when we start the day meditating on what God has done for us.

At least for believers, that should be an easy thing this time of year.  We are reminded of all the Lord has done for us.  Taking on our humanity and living among us was truly a special gift.  Then, bearing our sins to the cross and rising for our salvation was something we couldn’t have even imagined that God would be willing to accomplish for us.

What an incredible thing!  To have your sins forgiven.  To know that the blood of Christ washes you clean.  To be able to approach His holy presence without fear of condemnation.  It’s no wonder that Isaiah felt like all creation was bursting into song before him.

The privilege is ours now to run into His majestic presence.  Don’t start the day without spending time with Him.  Commit the day ahead to His care.  Let Him establish and maintain you.  Bring praise and worship before Him.  Don’t you dare let the forests and mountains outdo you in the praise of His glorious name!

Question: Is there something you would like to praise God for right now?

© Nick Zaccardi 2012

 
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Posted by on December 26, 2012 in Encouragement, Worship

 

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Comparing

Galatians 6:4-5
Each one should test his own actions.  Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else, for each one should carry his own load.

It is the great destroyer of life.

“Why can’t you be like…”

“Why can’t I be like…”

It will rob you of your joy.  It will make your life miserable.

I love to hike, but when I first started, it was a very frustrating experience.  Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the hiking part.  But I would be zooming along as fast as my little Italian legs could carry me.  Then these other hikers who were all legs (and seemed to be only strolling along) passed me like I was standing still.

The envy that I felt robbed me of the pleasure I should have been experiencing.  It was only when I learned to enjoy MY hike that the pleasure returned.

It is the same in our daily lives.  We are all different.  Don’t compare what someone else is doing to what you are doing.  You can always find somebody doing better than you, just as you can always find someone doing worse.  Comparing only serves to make you frustrated.

Take some time today to thank God for who you are.  Thank Him for your gifts, callings, strengths and weaknesses.  They all combine to make you a unique and precious gift in the Body of Christ.

 
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Posted by on March 10, 2012 in Daily Thoughts

 

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