Kate’s Gift

My daughter, Kate, has not yet completed her spiritual gifts assessment, but I’m pretty sure when she does, mercy will show up as one of her prominent gifts.  I first noticed this when she was a teenager.  She often had friends who were needy or underprivileged in some way.  She wanted to volunteer at the local rescue mission.  She wanted to help others, even when my husband and I, as her parents, were afraid that doing so was risky for her. I couldn’t understand sometimes, why she was so set on people and activities that might lead her into undesirable environments.  It finally dawned one me– Kate has the gift of mercy!  She is naturally drawn to the people who need her the most.

That helped me tremendously.  As her mother, I still had to guide her until she learned to use that gifts in ways that were appropriate for her age and situation;  but I also had to allow her some room to exercise that God-given ability when she could.

Here’s how the Fanning the Flame workbook describes the gift of mercy.  Do you have this gift?  If so, the Lutheran Ladies would like to hear from you.

 MERCY

 Literal Meaning: To have compassion

Description: The gift of mercy is the special ability that God gives to certain members of the Body of Christ to feel genuine empathy and compassion for individuals, both Christian and non-Christian, who suffer distressing physical, mental or emotional problems, and to translate that compassion into cheerfully done deeds that reflect Christ’s love and alleviate the suffering.

Distinctives:

q     Focus upon alleviating the sources of pain or discomfort in suffering people

q     Address the needs of the lonely and forgotten

q     Extend love, grace, and dignity to those facing hardships and crisis

q     Serve in difficult or unsightly circumstances and do so cheerfully

q     Concern themselves with individual or social issues that oppress people

 

Traits: Cautions:
q Empathetic q Need to be aware that rescuing people from their
q Caring pain may be hindering God’s work in them
q Responsive q Need to guard against feeling “unappreciated,” since
q Kind some of the people helped will not show or express
q Compassionate any appreciation
q Sensitive q Should guard against becoming defensive and angry
q Burden-bearing about the sources of others’ pain

 

References: Acts 16:33-34; Matthew 5:7; Romans 12:8; Hebrews 4:16

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What Turns You On?

Eric Liddell,  the famous Olympic runner portrayed in the movie “Chariots of Fire” once said, “God made me fast and when I run, I feel His pleasure.”  If, like Kate, you are wondering how to spend your time, look toward your God-given talents and gifts, and look for your passion.  When do you get the feeling, “this is what I was meant to do?”

A couple of my blogging sisters call me “the blogoholic”.  They say I am obsessed with our blog.  I don’t think that’s really true, but right now it is my passion.  It doesn’t feel like work to write a post practically every day.  I get a charge out of every comment and like.  I get an even bigger charge when I find a new writer to join us,  learn something new about technology, or when someone else shares a post.  Writing is a talent, and encouragement is one of my spiritual gifts–being the chief blogger combines both and I love it.

My dear friend, Nancy is a teacher.  She once told me that teaching is not just a job for her–if she couldn’t get paid for it, she would teach anyway.   She would teach Sunday School, or Bible Study, or join the Literacy Council and teach reading.  Teaching is her passion.

Beth Ann, one of the lady bloggers, is a musician.  The best times of her life have been spent making music.  She sings in the choir, she plays guitar for Via de Cristo weekends and serves on the Via de Cristo Board as the head musician.  Music touches her in a special way.  It’s her passion.

Michele, another Lutheran Lady, loves people and loves to witness.  She proclaims her Christian faith “loud and proud.”  It doesn’t matter who you are, or what you’ve done, Michele wants to be your friend and introduce you to her best friend, Jesus.  It’s her passion.

So think about your life.  What are the things that make you feel fulfilled?  When do you get that “click” that means, I was created for this?  If you became independently wealthy and didn’t need to work, how would you spend your time and money?  What energizes you?  What turns you on?  I want to hear from our readers and bloggers!

“Never flag in zeal, be aglow with the Spirit, serve the Lord.”  Romans 12:11