Good Enough For The Refrigerator

10/07/2009
"The woods would be very quiet if no birds sang there except those who sang best."
Henry Van Dyke

Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.

1 Corinthians 12:7
 

Dave Weiss Image

Did a child ever hand you a picture or a playdough sculpture or a couple of flowers and then stand there proudly to see your reaction? If so, what did you say? I'm guessing it was something like, "This is beautiful! I'm going to put it right here so everyone can see it!" The thought of saying something like, "oh...this is not very good at all--why don't you try again or better yet, don't bother" didn't even cross your mind, did it?

All of us are given gifts by God to be used to glorify Him and to serve the body of Christ. Some are obvious to us and others, while some are not. (I highly recommend going through a Spiritual Gifts discernment curriculum if you haven't already done so. Contact Pastor John or myself for more information.) Why are we afraid to use them? Do we think God will reject our effort like an abusive parent? Or are we afraid they're just not good enough?

We read in 1 Corinthians that "God gives us many kinds of special abilities, but it is the same Holy Spirit who is the source of them all." (1 Cor 12:4, The Living Bible) If God has given you a gift through the Holy Spirit, it's good enough. It's a "manifestation" of the Spirit--God's way of appearing to His believers. If God wants to show up, I'm guessing it's a good idea for us to not lock the door.

Yesterday I received a CD in the mail from a friend of mine. Oh, to be able to sing with such beauty, richness and control! I can sing a little, but not like that. And I must admit it's tempting to say, "why should I bother when others can do it so much better?" The same thing happens when I listen to a score composed by someone like Vince Dicola...and my own compositions suddenly remind me of the classic "Chopsticks."

The quote from Henry Van Dyke brings it all into perspective--how quiet it would be if only the best birds sang! Gifts must be used or they become like the money in the Matthew 25 parable we looked at last time--stuck in the ground, doing nothing. But that doesn't mean that if you're not particularly gifted in a certain area you shouldn't even make an attempt at something--you don't need the gift of hospitality to welcome a stranger or the gift of mercy to forgive someone. Like the widow in Mark 12:42, God looks favorably upon those who do what they can with their heart in the right place.

The things we do with what we're given are the things that remain after we're gone. I've been to several funerals recently and the stories that are shared are ones usually involving a memory of doing something together. There are no stories of someone who waited so long to make a bookshelf for their granddaughter that she outgrew the need for the flowered stencils that had been bought. They all end like a picture that gets put up on the fridge--not perfect but accepted with love.

God's refrigerator is probably pretty big. It's big enough for all the pictures we're going to draw. Don't be afraid to draw something for Him. He doesn't demand perfection--He just wants you to try.

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There are 4 comments

Thanks for the encouragement.

Jamie
October 09, 2009 - 15:27

Kent, just wanted to thank you for taking the time to write these devotionals, I really look forward to them.

I can really relate to the part:

Yesterday I received a CD in the mail from a friend of mine. Oh, to be able to sing with such beauty, richness and control! I can sing a little, but not like that. And I must admit it's tempting to say, "why should I bother when others can do it so much better?"

I often struggle with feelings like that. I'll bet many of your readers can relate. And I like that you used the Van Dyke quote - for many years it hung on my bulletin board - seeing it here is like meeting an old friend again.

I'm already looking forward to your next entry...

Shawn Smith
October 07, 2009 - 21:13

Excellent devo, encourages me even in times when I know someone else can do something so much better, God still has called me to be faithful for Him. blessings,

Rich Bushong
October 07, 2009 - 16:58

Pastor Dave, thanks so much for letting use the graphic from your New Orleans missions trip!

Pastor Kent
October 07, 2009 - 15:00
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