Video by David Diga Hernandez

The music beat steadily as the worship team led the congregation in song. Lisa closed her eyes, raising her hands as she became lost in reverence for Jesus Christ.

Suddenly, an image flashed in her mind – a vivid picture of her friend James in a hospital bed, looking frail and frightened. Lisa felt an overwhelming urge to pray for him.

She slipped away to the church lobby and sent a text message to James’ wife. “Has James been admitted to the hospital recently?”

The reply came almost instantly. “Yes, late last night! He developed a severe infection and his health declined rapidly. Please pray!!”

Lisa’s heart quickened. She recognized this “word of knowledge” for what it was – one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in action to meet a real need.

After praying fervently, a follow-up text later reported James was already stabilizing.

Lisa smiled, thanking God for orchestrating this timely supernatural intervention through the mystery and miracle of spiritual gifts.

The Diversity and Unity of Spiritual Gifts

The Diversity and Unity of Spiritual Gifts

As this story illustrates, spiritual gifts come in many forms with one aim – to glorify God by strengthening fellow believers.

The Apostle Paul mentions at least nine gifts that are imparted uniquely by the Holy Spirit.

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. But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.

1 Corinthians 12:4-11 (NKJV)

Speaking Gifts

  • Prophecy – communicating spontaneous messages from God.
  • Tongues – speaking in a Spirit-given prayer language.
  • Interpretation – making tongues intelligible to others.

Power Gifts

  • Faith – extraordinary confidence to see God’s miraculous intervention.
  • Miracles – awe-inspiring acts altering the ordinary course of nature.
  • Healing – restoring health and wholeness supernaturally.

Revelation Gifts

  • Wisdom – grasping God’s perspective on complex situations.
  • Knowledge – discovering facts not naturally accessible.
  • Discernment – detecting spiritual forces at work.

The Holy Spirit especially tailors these gifts for each person “as He determines” (1 Corinthians 12:11) to strengthen the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:7). 

Our gracious God delights in expressing His love through diverse spiritual abilities blended in harmonious action.

How the Gifts of The Spirit Operate

How the Gifts of The Spirit Operate

The gifts often flow together by the Spirit’s orchestration. Revelation gifts often initiate and guide demonstrations of power.

For instance, a word of knowledge about someone’s illness may prompt Spirit-empowered healing through prayer and laying on of hands. Revelation kickstarts power in coordinated ministry.

Additionally, speaking gifts like tongues and interpretations may follow to encourage God’s people.

“To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.”

1 Corinthians 12:7 (NIV)

Scripture intriguingly describes spiritual gifts as being transferred from the Holy Spirit through human vessels to bless others.

When God empowers healing, His grace flows through the person ministering to transform the one needing restoration (1 Corinthians 12:9).

The gift channels through willingly offered hands as God actively works through available vessels.

Using Spiritual Gifts Humbly

Using Spiritual Gifts

“What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?”

1 Corinthians 4:7 (NIV)

Since the Holy Spirit generously apportions gifts “as He wills” (1 Corinthians 12:11), we can’t boast about these abilities.

Yet the Corinthians pridefully competed over their spiritual gifts instead of stewarding them in love to meet the needs of other believers.

Do you subtly lord your spiritual success over others, arousing envy? Or do you lovingly strengthen others with humility and compassion through good stewardship of grace-imparted gifts?

These gifts aren’t for us, but for the church – to reveal Jesus’ heart.

Contrasting Gifts and Fruit of The Holy Spirit

9 Holy Spirit Fruits

The Holy Spirit grows lovely fruit in believers over time while also imparting timely supernatural gifts to bless specific needs.


  • Grown steadily through seasons.
  • For our Christlike witness.
  • Benefits self and others.


  • Given spontaneously as required.
  • For building up the body.
  • Meet the urgent needs of others.

Mature fruit like love and kindness should increasingly mark every Christian, overflowing from the Spirit’s inner work.

On the other hand, spiritual gifts operate intermittently to uniquely fit situational needs.

Key Takeaways on Gifts of the Holy Spirit

  • Spiritual gifts work harmoniously to serve specific needs through divine revelation, action, and proclamation.
  • We receive gifts to humbly give them away for mutual strengthening as the Spirit guides.
  • Gifts cultivate humility, not pride, recognizing God as the Giver.
  • Bearing fruit and exercising gifts both have vital roles in Christlike maturity.

Developing spiritual gifts and fruit requires us to stay connected to the True Vine, Jesus Christ through prayer, obedience, and faith.


I hope this overview gives you a balanced, encouraging perspective on the beauty and purpose of the Holy Spirit’s diverse gifts. We have the monumental privilege of partnering with Him.

As you seek spiritual gifts, focus on cultivating love, joy, and peace – the fruit that inevitably flows from true intimacy with Jesus. Desire most of all greater surrender to the Giver, not just the gifts.

Experience the adventure of shaping history through cooperation with the Holy Spirit.

May we steward these gifts well for the flourishing of many. The world awaits what we will do with what we’ve been given.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What are some examples of Holy Spirit gifts operating in daily life?

A. When you sense God prompting you to intercede for a friend, then discover they were in crisis, that’s exercising the gift of faith! 

If you gain soul-stirring insight from Scripture on God’s compassion for marginalized people, there’s a word of wisdom taking shape!

Q. Can every believer expect to operate powerfully in certain gifts like prophecy or healing?

A. Scripture urges us to eagerly desire spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 14:1) as we grow in friendship with the Holy Spirit.

However, God uniquely tailors and distributes gifts among believers as He selectively determines what each community requires (1 Corinthians 12:7, 11). So we may not all function identically.

The key is availability, not insistence on any particular gift. Commit to faithfulness no matter your calling.

Maintaining love, unity, and renewed desire may open up new experiences. But humility and love are the greatest gifts to pursue.

Q: How can I activate spiritual gifts in my own life?

A: As you yield more to the Spirit of the Lord in repentance and revival, He will entrust you with more authority to partner with Him in purposeful ministry.

Try these ideas to activate greater spiritual giftedness:

  • Study Scripture’s teaching on the gifts.
  • Create time to listen to the Spirit’s guidance.
  • Step out in courageous faith.
  • Get involved in a mentoring community.
  • Journal about growth for encouragement.

At every stage evaluate whether you’re responding wholeheartedly or resisting the Spirit’s leadership.

Let these gifts deepen intimacy with Jesus, not eclipse Him. Discovering one’s unique spiritual giftings requires resolve and progressive revelation as you consecrate yourself unreservedly to God.

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