Our spiritual growth is such an interesting thing to consider. Growth is never a linear path. Every one of us needs something different, at different times, and in different moderations to achieve growth. If we make the comparison to botany and the growth of plant life, it is very similar. All plants need similar components in order to grow: nutrition, soil, water, and sunlight. However, no two plants need them in the exact same way. A house plant has different needs compared to a desert cactus. One needs to be watered daily, while the other does not. It is the same for us and our walks with the Lord. Hopefully, the goal of our spiritual growth is to draw closer to the Lord. Many things play a role in that process. Naturally, we need to be in the Word and we need to spend time in prayer with the Lord. We need to be fed by attending church gatherings. These are the basics that make up a Christian walk.
One component that I feel is occasionally overlooked is that of service. While it is absolutely important to be constantly learning and gaining an understanding of God’s character and what the Bible teaches, it is equally important to use the knowledge, gifts, and talents that we have to help others in their own walks. In 1 Peter 4:10, it says, “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.” Each and every one of us has been gifted, by God’s grace, with things unique to us: our talents, knowledge, and history are unique traits specific to us much like a thumbprint. Those unique traits are gifts that make us uniquely equipped to serve. The things we have seen, the hardships we have endured, the lessons we have learned are all things that come together to give us an understanding that is specific to us.
We can use this to demonstrate Jesus in a way that no one else can. A person that has beaten addiction can minister to someone in that arena in a way that someone without that experience cannot. Some are gifted teachers and can use that talent to serve others while for some, they would rather walk on coals than speak in front of an audience. Some are gifted at connecting with people; they form bonds and remember names and specific details of everyone they meet. Others are gifted in prayer and can use their talents to lift up their community in prayer.
By serving in these various ways, we are doing several things. First and foremost, we are pointing people to Christ. By demonstrating love through service and by using our God-given talents, we are a direct representation of the Gospel. Secondly, we ourselves are growing. God does not need anything or anyone to serve others, yet He chooses to use us as His instruments to love on, and reach the world. When God is working through us in this way, it is only natural that our relationship, our connection, and our love for Him will grow. Service opens up a brand-new understanding of God’s great love and His character.
I implore you, as you read today, to take three minutes and ask yourself in what capacity you could serve. As I stated previously, it is different for everyone so ask yourself what gifts and talents are unique to you that you can now use to glorify God. If you need assistance in knowing areas that are available to serve, do not hesitate to reach out to someone at your location. This week, remember that service is part of our growth in the Lord. Challenge yourself and even try something new. I assure you the Lord will bless your efforts and use you.