Original post at http://sandpipersthoughts.blogspot.com/2013/01/backwards.html
I was reading this morning from the Daily Feast. The meditation was based on I Corinthians 12 -- a variety of gifts but one body.
The author, Raewynne J. Whiteley, says, "Gifts are not merit badges for holiness or signs of approval from God, but God's response to the needs of our communities."
So often we think - if we think about gifts in our churches at all -- that we need to find ministries in which to plug people so that they can use their gifts. You are a gifted teacher? Then here is a Sunday school class for you. Could it be that we are doing it backwards?
Should we be assessing what gifts God has given our community and then building the ministry based on the gifts we possess? Could it be that if God has graced our community with certain gifts then he has done so because he knows we need the gifts to do the work he has planned for us?
Perhaps a better way to plan ministry is to determine our gifts and then see how those gifts can be used in the work God has planned for us -- so that the gifts lead the way to the ministry.