Everyone has gifts, talents and callings God placed inside them from before they were even born. The Lord told Jeremiah:
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” —Jeremiah 1:5
So, before you were even born, God put wonderful ministry gifts inside you! As Christians, we are to find out from the Holy Spirit what our gifts and callings are so we can fulfill all the will of God for our lives.
A complete list of the 16 ministry gifts is found in three passages of scripture: Ephesians 4:11, Romans 12:7-8 and 1 Corinthians 12:28-29. All of us fall into one or more of these gifts. You may have more than one, but one of them will be primary.
So many times, Christians mistakenly believe that if they don’t have a pulpit ministry or are not one of what’s called the five-fold ministry gifts—apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, teacher (Eph. 4:11)—they aren’t important. They think that if they don’t become the pastor of a church or have a worldwide, traveling ministry they have not succeeded in life.
Nothing could be farther from the truth! Some gifts are more natural or lacking in a supernatural element, but they all come from a supernatural source. Helps might not be as spectacular, but it is supernatural. Every ministry in the body of Christ is necessary for the body to function as God intended, and no gift is more important than the others.
“There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.” —1 Corinthians 12:4-6
So, how can you be sure of what God has placed inside you and called you to?
This list isn’t by any means exhaustive, but here are a few ways:
- Pray, fast and seek the Lord. Nothing will take the place of asking the One who created you what you were created to do. Ask Him, and then spend time in prayer, and don’t just do all the talking! Spend time listening to the Holy Spirit.
- It will “make your baby jump!” When you are operating in your calling, you’ll get excited. You will feel like there’s nothing better in life! There really isn’t anything better than being in the middle of God’s will, doing what He called you to do.
- You’ll have a conviction in your spirit. There’s an assurance that goes with a calling. You’ll just know that you know that you know you are called to do this. Brother Kenneth Hagin called it “the inward witness” when he wrote of ways you hear the voice of the Lord.
- You’ll have the spiritual “equipment.” Just as there’s an assurance, there’s an anointing and gifts that go with a calling. When you operate in your ministry gift, it will be easy. It may even seem as though the Holy Spirit has taken over and is working through you—because He is!
- You’ll have a divine drive or compulsion to do it. I could not do or be anything other than a teacher. The Passion Translation of 1 Corinthians 9:16-17 says, “For you see, even though I proclaim the good news, I can’t take the credit for my labors, for I am compelled to fulfill my duty by completing this work. It would be agony to me if I did not constantly preach the gospel! If it were my own idea to preach as a way to make a living, I would expect to be paid. Since it’s not my idea but God’s, who commissioned me, I am entrusted with the stewardship of the gospel whether or not I’m paid.” You will do what God calls you to whether you get paid or not!
Just as the body of Christ needs the five-fold ministry gifts, it needs exhorters, givers, leaders, helpers and every other ministry gift. Don’t let anyone other than God “call” you into a pulpit ministry if you aren’t called to have one. Anyone includes yourself as well. You can’t “call” yourself!
You can sit in a garage all day long and call yourself a car, but that won’t make you a car!
When we learn our place in the body of Christ, get in it and do what God called us to do, the body will function as it is supposed to. And when we go home to be with Jesus, we will know we did our part by fulfilling God’s will for our lives while we were here on Earth!
Do you have a desire to do something for God with your life, but you aren’t sure just what to do? Whether you’re called to fulltime ministry or lay ministry, this FREE series will help you know what to do when you don’t know what to do. This informative teaching will help you get moving in the right direction and reach your God-given potential!
Subjects include ministry gifts, ministry of helps, excellence, navigating change, servant hood, obedience, God’s timing and supernatural promotion.