Memorizing bible verses wasn’t a part of my childhood so I don’t have a random Sunday School collection of them rattling around in my head. When one comes to mind now it’s usually because I went searching for answers during an adult crisis, found a passage of scripture that was particularly meaningful, and wrote it in my journal so I wouldn’t forget it.
“…We have different gifts according to the grace given to us.”
This snippet reassured me at a time when I doubted if my life had any purpose at all, and since then I’ve quoted it many times to people when they’ve said they had no special abilities or talent.
Yesterday it popped into my consciousness while looking at an old family photograph. In it are my grandfather, my father, and his two brothers. They were all artists. I’m pretty sure three of them wouldn’t have agreed with that statement, but nevertheless each in his own way produced art.
One brother, Harry, created exceptional oil paintings. The other three – my grandfather, my father and his other brother Ray – were bricklayers. They worked in a different medium, and with bricks, blocks, stone and mortar created a useful, yet eye-pleasing kind of beauty. They all worked with passion and discipline, striving for quality.
In retrospect, I realize it wasn’t just my parents, but the whole extended family that taught by example what it means to use one’s abilities and give one’s best in every endeavour.
The lessons we learn throughout life will be reflected in our goals. As writers, I think they affect the stories we are driven to write and the degree to which we strive for excellence in the writing. Some authors use words to produce exquisite beauty, some allow us to enter other worlds or feel the emotions experienced by fictional characters. Some are skilled at communicating knowledge with clarity. They all possess different gifts — i.e., they are all gifted — but I wonder if they realize it. Do you?
I never imagined a scripture verse memorized so long ago would provide such revelations all these years later. It has me wondering what the world might be like if we all acted as if we believed we had been gifted by God.
Have you identified the gifts you were given? How do you make use of them, or are they dormant?
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