Thoughts for the Day

Tuesday, 23rd May 2023: Gifts of the Spirit

Gifts Paul Church Christians 1 Corinthians 12 Gifts of the Spirit

Reading : Verses from 1 Corinthians, Chapter 12

Holy Spirit

Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.... Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses.

For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

(Lectionary, New Revised Standard Version)


Just use your imagination for a moment! You are one of the disciples waiting in Jerusalem for the coming of the Holy Spirit. Your Lord has left you, he has ascended to heaven and charged you to take the good news to all the world. You are living in hope, and perhaps some trepidation. You're just an ordinary person, not a speaker, or leader. How are you to do this?

Well the Holy Spirit was to descend on the disciples at Pentecost (50 days after Easter**), giving them special gifts. Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians, mentions some of them. But we should note that these gifts are given for the whole Church, and that he speaks of 'varieties of services' and 'varieties of activities'. Often we concentrate too much on gifts like teaching and speaking, but Paul clearly has in mind many things, including those who use their hands, who offer hospitality to others, or produce music, or who offer practical help.

Let's also remember that the Church community cannot be effective if one part is missing or is not working. My car will not drive properly with a flat tyre, or when the alternator is defective! So it is with the Church. Every Christian is called to use the gifts they were given at their Baptism (and Confirmation), for the good of all.

** Pentecost in 2023 is on Sunday 28th May!


Spirit of God
we thank You for the gifts
that You give each one of us.
Help us to see how they can be used
for the benefit of all in the Church.
May we value the gifts that use our hands
as much as the intellectual ones,
and may we understand that all
God's children are needed to
undertake the work that Jesus
left us to do on this earth.

Follow Up Thoughts

You might like to read this article on giving of one's gifts, written by members of a Methodist Church in Indianapolis. It's amazing:

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