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Tag Archives: grace gift

Servant’s and Teacher’s Hearts

Servant’s and Teacher’s Hearts

As we go through Romans, I’ve started to describe the different grace gifts that we’ve been given. In my last post I talked about the prophet’s heart.

If it is serving, let him serve;

Romans 12:7a

The next gift I want to look at is the servant’s heart. These are the people who always want to help out. They want to be told what needs to be done and they jump right on it.

People with this heart are always needed in the local ministry. They’re the ones who come up to you and say, “Just tell me what you want done.” They don’t care if no one sees what they’re doing. They’re not looking for any kind of advancement. They simply want to be of service to God’s kingdom.

It’s interesting that Paul gives them no special exhortation, just to serve in your serving.

These people have a special insight into what needs to be done. They sometimes see a need and fill it before others even recognize the problem.

An example of someone with this heart is Martha. Think about the time that Jesus came to teach at her home.

But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

Luke 10:40

This illustrates the problem that a servant’s heart will sometimes face. Because of their ability to see what needs to be done, they sometimes get frustrated when others don’t see the need to serve. There is a solution to this, but it will be difficult for them to implement it.

Because of their special insight of what needs to be done, many times it makes them a good candidate for leadership positions. The problem is that they usually don’t see themselves as leaders.

But, in my opinion, some of the best leaders are those who lead by example. Their lives are a living illustration of how to serve in God’s kingdom.

…if it is teaching, let him teach;

Romans 12:7b

The next grace gift that Paul mentions is the teacher’s heart. I understand this one the most, because it’s my personal motivation.

People with a teacher’s heart want to impart information that will help others to live a better life. Jesus gives a good description of this motivation.

He said to them, “Therefore every teacher of the law who has been instructed about the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old.”

Matthew 13:52

Those with this gift see themselves as storehouses of valuable treasures. They see information as God’s grace to be distributed. Unfortunately, the value of this treasure is in the eye of the beholder.

The problem that many of us with this heart run into, is that we’re tempted to teach – give out this information – at inappropriate times. For instance, if a dish falls off the counter, that’s not the right time to explain to a family member why putting it too close to the edge is what caused the mess. Yes, I know this from experience!

In walking with a teacher’s heart, the best approach is to distribute the grace of information according to the Word we received from God. We need to be aware of the feelings and needs of those around us and not just our desire to teach them the “right way”.

In this way, we can see God’s hand at work through us.

Questions: Do you have a servant’s or a teacher’s heart? Who do you know with these gifts?

© 2021 Nick Zaccardi

 
 

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Do You have a Prophet’s Heart?

Do You have a Prophet’s Heart?

In my last post, I started to look at the grace gifts that each of has. These speak of the different motivations we use to distribute God’s grace to those around us.

I personally believe, based upon my observation of God’s people, that each of us has only been given one of these gifts. It’s the filter through which we see the world and our ministry.

We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith.

Romans 12:6

The first gift Paul mentions is prophesying. Remember, this is not the ministry of a prophet, but a “prophet’s heart.” This motivation is a heart that desires to speak for God.

This is probably the motivation that’s the easiest to spot in someone. A person with a prophet’s heart will manifest a very dogmatic personality. There are no gray areas with them. Everything is either right or wrong, black or white; there’s no middle ground.

What we need to realize is that each of these motivations can be mishandled. None of us are perfect. If we’re not careful, we can get carried away by the directions of our heart and cause conflict with others of a different heart.

Many times you’ll find someone with a prophet’s heart getting in trouble for what they say. People can easily misunderstand them and think that they’re too legalistic.

The fact is, this grace gift is motivated by a desire to see people reach their fullest potential in Christ. When they see someone missing the mark, they feel the need to warn them. Not to be mean, but to help them live their best life.
The fact is that we need dogmatic people in the body of Christ. They help keep us straight when we’re tempted to leave the path.

I know this from experience. My wife, Cheryl, has the motivation of a prophet’s heart. I find it a blessing to my spiritual walk. However, there have been those who’ve accused her of being mean because they don’t understand what she’s really trying to accomplish.

A great example of this in the Scripture is the apostle, Peter. He definitely walked in this grace gift. Look at his response to Jesus when the Lord tried to wash his feet.

“No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.”

Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”

“Then, Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!”

John 13:8-9

Peter was that person with no middle ground. His first response, thinking that this act was beneath the Messiah, was that it would never happen. Then, once Christ explained what He was doing, Peter jumps in “whole hog”, and tells Jesus to give him a bath. These are the responses of a prophet’s heart.

That’s why Paul exhorts this person to use this heart in proportion to your faith. Having already told us that faith comes by hearing through a Word from God, it gives us the foundation for this grace gift.

Someone with this gift needs to be careful to only be adamant about what they know they received from God. We have to rely on what God says as truth. That’s the only true foundation for our faith.

If not, we become dogmatic about the laws of men. Being hard-headed about the doctrines of man can cause a lot of unneeded drama in the body of Christ. This causes many to be accused of being self-righteous Pharisees.

Used correctly, this motivation is very much needed in the church. If it’s your gift, cultivate it as the Lord leads you to speak and act on His behalf. It brings God’s grace to keep His people on track with His will.

Questions: Do you have a prophet’s heart? Who do you know with a prophet’s heart?

© 2021 Nick Zaccardi

 
 

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