I know this flies in the face of what I was taught in church, but I have firmly come to believe that you are born with at least some of your ‘spiritual’ gifts.
If we are ‘predestined’, ‘foreordained’, ‘chosen before the foundations of the world’, doesn’t it make sense that at least some of the gifts you’ll need would be put in you from birth, so you can learn how to use them?
For instance, if you were created to be an evangelist or preacher, you probably were born with the gift of saying things in a way that makes them clear and/or compelling, to your hearers. If you are destined to be an artist, chances are you decorated everything with mud or crayons or whatever from the time you could crawl. (All children do this, of course, as we were created in the image of a creative God, but some never grow out of it.)
It’s kind of a ‘chicken or the egg’ thing – which came first, your personality with all its giftings, or your call in God? They are so inextricably entwined, that it’s hard to see which came first, brought the other into being, influenced and affected which.
So, having considered the possibility of your personality, gifts, inclinations even, being created for/around your calling, let’s think about what our enemy does with this. Does he allow our gifts to grow and bear fruit in our lives, by helping others? Or does he sabotage us and our gifts any way he can?
Of course, he sabotages us! He tells us that we don’t really have that gift; or that it’s selfish or sinful; or that we don’t have the strength to do it; or are the wrong gender/race/nationality to do it. Any lie that works!
If he can’t stop us from using our gifts, he’ll put someone in our lives to use the gift on, which drains us so much we can’t help the ones Father God really meant us to help.
To give a rather broad example: compassion and nurturing are embedded in female DNA. But how many women do you personally (maybe too personally) know, whose compassion and nurturing have been used against them? They are or have been in a relationship that is abusive – mentally, emotionally, physically, financially, or all of the above. When asked about leaving, they say things like “he’s a really good person! If he could just stop drinking . . . ” or “nobody understands him/what he’s been through” or how about this ugly thing – “I feel God has called me to stay, to be His witness to him” ugh!!!! (I think that may be the ugliest lie of all, especially when there are children involved. Staying to ‘witness’ to an abuser is ‘witnessing’ to those children that God wants them to be abused, mistreated, not loved or protected!) Their natural gift is being drained, so it can’t be used in the way Father God intended!
What about the person (male or female) who was born to write, or teach, or paint, but was told they had no talent, or that their gift was not needed or appreciated in the church? Or just never had their gift acknowledged as special, so they thought it was no big deal, was ‘normal’? (I know for years, I thought everyone could write as well as I could. It took a lot of work by Father God to convince me that this is a gift from Him.)
Or the person who has the ability to see the underlying emotions and reasons for others’ behaviors, but is told that that is not a godly trait? It’s ‘new agey’ or psychic or just plain evil. (Really? seems to me Jesus did that all the time.)
Bottom line? Satan will use your gifts against you any way, any time, he can. And the most insidious thing he does is to persuade you that you hate the thing you were born to be or do! How many people have never achieved their full potential because somewhere back in their childhood, they became convinced that being wealthy or creative, or certain cultures or continents, or this or that career path, was not acceptable – to their parents/God/society/themselves?
Stop and think about something you’ve hated as long as you can remember. Not injustice or bigotry or greed or murder or anything like that. Think of something that in itself is not wrong, but you’ve somehow decided is wrong, for you at least.
Find something? Several somethings? Huh. If you take those things to Father God, chances are He’ll show you some lies in there, and you might even find that you’ve been hating something that He actually intended you to be or do.
Our enemy hates our Father, and he knows one of the best ways to hurt Him is to destroy or twist or give us a disgust of the gifts Father put in us to bless the world with.
So take the time to look at your gifts – what you loved to do as a child, what you’ve always been good at, but also what you’ve felt was wrong to want or do. Allow Father God to show you His truth. And let Him set you free to become who He created you to be! It’ll change your life, and then the world!
May you be blessed with true sight and insight regarding the gifts Father God has placed in you to help the world, and the wisdom and freedom to use those gifts for His Kingdom the way He wants you to.