Now that I’m back from my vacation, we can continue our walk through the book of Romans. Paul is now using the illustration of a physical body to show our placement in the body of Christ.
Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.
In this section of Scripture, he’s talking about placement in the body. Every part does something different, and that’s by design.
It’s all about grace. It’s about what we’ve received from God, according to our faith by the Word. That’s how God places us where we were designed to be.
Please understand that we’re all members of the same body. There’s not a Baptist body and a Presbyterian body. We’re all one in Christ Jesus. That’s why it’s so important to keep receiving and growing in the Word.
But as I said previously, we’re all designed by God to be different. We all have unique functions in the Body of Christ.
We have different gifts, according to the grace given us.
This verse tells us that we receive gifts according to the grace given us. But, to get the full impact, you really need to see it in the original Greek. Paul tells us that we receive charismata (gifts) according to the charis (grace) given us.
Now it’s easy to see that the words gift and grace both come from the same root. These are not gifts in the sense of Christmas presents that you can do whatever you want with them.
These are gifts that flow from God’s grace to you. That means God still retains control over how you use these gifts. It’s like the Lord is telling you, “I’m giving you this to use according to my wishes.”
The apostle now goes through and lists these “Grace Gifts”. They’re all different and everybody has one. The Grace Gift you possess defines how you distribute God’s grace to those around you.
Please understand that this is NOT talking about our ministry. These gifts actually have no relation to what our ministry gifts are. These gifts deal with the “how” of what we do for the Lord.
These gifts explain how grace flows from your heart to the lives of others. They are the different ways that we relate, respond and react to others. That’s why sometimes people will refer to these gifts as “hearts”. (Like prophet’s heart or giver’s heart)
One of the problems we sometimes face is when we think that someone else’s way is better, so we try to copy them. Or, sometimes we think that our way is the best. The truth is that we’re all different and unique in our own way.
As I said before, these “hearts” don’t define or determine our ministry. Ministry is based upon God’s calling. For example, I can have a giver’s heart, and yet be called to the ministry of teaching.
These Grace Gifts also explain what motivates us to fulfill God’s calling in us. That’s why in some circles they’re also called the Motivational Gifts.
But, whatever you call them, these gifts deal with how you administer God’s grace to those around you. Depending on your heart, you fulfill your ministry in a different way.
I believe that an understanding of these gifts are important to our spiritual growth. It brings greater awareness of who we are as unique individuals. They also help us to understand and accept the differences in others.
Over the next few posts, I’ll explain each one in more detail. My hope is that it will be a blessing to you as you see God’s hand upon your life and ministry.
Question: What is your motivation for serving Christ?
© 2021 Nick Zaccardi