Scripture tells us that anyone who chooses to follow Christ becomes gifted by the Holy Spirit. Paul wrote to the Corinthians that they were lacking in nothing because of the gifts of the Spirit. Was this only true of the Corinthians or is this true of us as well? This is a part of scripture that I believe extends over just that time and culture. If you follow Christ, you will be granted what Paul calls spiritual gifts. (Read 1 Corinthians 1:4-8)
If this is true, then there is a question we all have to ask ourselves. What are we gifted in? What is our spiritual gift? How do we discern whether we are gifted in a certain area or not?
Here are a few things that have helped me:
1) Listen to those around you – Those we spend time with can often see the things we are gifted in easier than we can see them ourselves. The people we have in our lives are an incredible resource in discerning our gifting. However, it is important that we check ourselves. We aren’t looking for the praise of others, but we are looking to get a clearer picture of who we are. In the same way, we must be careful not to let someone else’s expectations guide our actions. Seek wisdom, avoid manipulation.
2) Take a personality test – Anyone can take a personality test. You don’t have to believe in God to take a personality test. I think they can be beneficial for everyone, but the rubber meets the road after the test results are bounced back. Its one thing to know ourselves better, its another thing to do something with that knowledge.
3) Take a spiritual gifts inventory – I did this a couple of years back. At the time, I didn’t see much of the point. However, a spiritual gifts inventory can work a lot like a personality test. It can affirm what we already know, but it can also point out areas of potential we have not thought about before. Both of these things can also show us areas in which we can grow. Soon, I think I am going to go through the inventory again and see if anything has changed.
There are many resources both online and in print concerning spiritual gifts. Don’t underestimate the wisdom of the people around you. We all tend to see ourselves how we want to, and sometimes that isn’t always the clearest picture.