Video courtesy of THE BEAT by Allen Parr

Do you ever wonder, what is your God-given gift and purpose?

As believers in Christ, God has blessed each of us with special spiritual gifts. These gifts empower us to serve others, glorify God, and build up the church.

However, many Christians struggle to identify their spiritual gifts. We fail to steward our gifts, leaving them dormant rather than activating them for God’s kingdom.

In this blog post, let’s explore:

  • What spiritual gifts are
  • Signs for discovering your spiritual gifts
  • Steps to activate your spiritual gift
  • Biblical spiritual gifts and their purposes
  • FAQs on identifying spiritual gifts

After reading this article, you’ll have the clarity and confidence to unwrap the special gifts God has placed inside you!

What are Spiritual Gifts According to the Bible?

Holy Spirit Gifts

Spiritual gifts are special abilities given by the Holy Spirit to believers in Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 12:4 NLT). Their purpose is to empower you for Christian service and to build up the body of Christ.

4 There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. 5 There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord.”

1 Corinthians 12:4-5 (NLT)

These gifts are not your own natural talents or abilities. Rather, they are empowerments flowing through you from God’s Spirit, for the sake of serving others.

The Bible mentions three main categories of spiritual gifts:

1. Service Gifts

These gifts support serving others and meeting practical needs in the church:

  • Encouragement – Supernaturally encourage and strengthen people
  • Giving – Generously share finances and resources
  • Leadership – Provide vision, direction, and guidance
  • Mercy – Empathize, care for, and comfort those in need
  • Helps – Joyfully assist others in practical ways

2. Power Gifts

These gifts demonstrate God’s power in supernatural ways:

3. Speaking Gifts

These gifts explain truth and wisdom through communication:

  • Apostle – Start new churches or ministries
  • EvangelistConvert unbelievers to Christian faith
  • Pastor – Care for people in a Christian community
  • Teacher – Explain biblical truth clearly
  • Word of wisdom – Guide people with spiritual insight
  • Word of knowledge – Know facts and situations by revelation

So in summary, spiritual gifts empower us to serve, demonstrate God’s power, and communicate biblical truth, by means of the Holy Spirit.

With this foundation on spiritual gifts, let’s explore how to discover yours!

How Do You Discover Your Spiritual Gifts?

Developing a Strong Prayer Life

Unwrapping the special gifts God has given you begins with desire, recognition, and seeing gifts in action.

Here are the top signs for identifying spiritual gifts, based on 1 Corinthians 14:1 (NIV) and Proverbs 18:16 (NIV):

1. Desire

Pay attention to your interests and passions. What needs and issues stir your heart?

“Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit…”

1 Corinthians 14:1 (NIV)

God plants holy desires in us that hint at our spiritual gifts.

For example, if you have a burning passion to see people healed, it may indicate the gift of healing. A desire to pray could mean an intercessory gift.

Of course, desires can be complex. So desire alone isn’t enough, but it can indicate areas to explore.

Honor and test these longings through prayer and meditation on Scripture.

2. Recognition

Feedback from other Christians

Feedback and encouragement from other Christians help confirm spiritual gifts.

“A man’s gift makes room for him and brings him before great men.”

Proverbs 18:16 (ESV)

As you step out to serve in faith, do others affirm clear abilities and anointing in your efforts?

Their recognition helps confirm where your spiritual gifts lie. We often notice one another’s giftings more clearly than our own.

For example, if multiple people comment on your encouraging presence during hard times, it likely confirms an encouragement gift. Or feedback on your teaching may signal a teaching gift.

3. Function

At times, spiritual gifts operate through us before we fully understand them.

Pay attention to what God does through you. Where do you see spiritual fruit and gifts manifesting without much effort?

For example, if people are blessed by your generosity time and again, it points to the gift of giving. Prayers for healing being answered could indicate a gift of healing.

In summary, tune to your holy desires, listen to other believers and note when giftings flow through you. Track these signs to help you unveil your spiritual gifts!

Next, let’s explore how to activate and develop gifts you’ve discovered.

How Do You Activate Spiritual Gifts?

Activating Spiritual Gifts

Once you’ve discerned one or more spiritual gifts, you need to activate them for regular use.

Here are five keys to cultivating spiritual gifts based on 2 Timothy 1:6-7 (NLT) and Jude 1:20 (NLT).

1. Receive Spirit Baptism

Ask Jesus to fill you with the Holy Spirit who distributes these empowerments:

“This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you.”

2 Timothy 1:6 (NLT)

This baptism of the Spirit immerses you in God’s ability, transforming your words and service.

As you soak in the Spirit’s presence by faith, spiritual gifts rise up from within the depths of your soul. You’ll learn to walk, work, and pray under the influence of His power.

2. Desire Spiritual Gifts

“Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit…”

1 Corinthians 14:1 (NIV)

God wants us to desire and seek Him more than the gifts themselves. Sincere desire helps us steward gifts for selfless reasons rather than selfish ambition.

As we delight in God, the desire for gifts follows. Desiring spiritual things leads to life and peace (Romans 8:5-6).

This desire fuels our capacity to handle greater spiritual responsibility.

3. Take Action Through Faith

Sharing The Love Of God With The World

Step out to practice gifts in small ways, expectantly:

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and self-control.”

2 Timothy 1:7 (ESV)

Don’t wait for perfect confidence – it will develop as you use gifts.

Start by earnestly desiring spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 14:1) then attempt practicing that gift in low-risk settings.

Trust God to guide you as you act in faith. With practice, you’ll gain experience and confidence.

4. Nurture Intimacy with God

Build a relationship with Jesus through time in Scripture and prayer:

20 But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in God’s love…”

Jude 1:20-21 (NIV)

Pursuing intimacy with God nurtures our spiritual gifts. As we behold God’s glory in Scripture, gifts flourish.

Schedule regular times to read the Bible, journal, listen during prayer, and sing worship songs. Vibrant devotion empowers vibrant service.

5. Pray in the Spirit

Pray often in tongues to sharpen spiritual sensitivity:

“For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit.”

1 Corinthians 14:2 (NIV)

This private prayer language activates your spirit and builds faith for the public use of gifts like prophecy.

Praying in tongues helps us discern God’s voice. As we hear God the spiritual gifts will operate through us with confidence.

In summary, activate spiritual gifts by receiving the Holy Spirit’s power, eagerly desiring gifts, acting in faith, nurturing intimacy with Jesus, and praying in the Spirit.

Next, let’s explore the unique purpose your spiritual gifts serve.

What’s the Purpose of Different Spiritual Gifts?

the Purpose of Spiritual Gifts

Since Christians have varied spiritual gifts, what unique roles do these gifts play? Scripture reveals beautiful dimensions of meaning behind each gift.

The diversity of gifts works together to reveal God’s glory through serving the common good of the church community (1 Corinthians 14:26).

“Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ.”

1 Corinthians 12:12 (NIV)

When you discover your spiritual gifts, you’ll come alive. Understanding your special assignment gives you confidence and joy. Serving in your purposeful role is fulfilling.

Let’s explore examples of key spiritual gifts and their purpose:

  • The gift of leadership establishes vision, nurtures unity, and motivates a group toward meaningful objectives. Nehemiah led people in a mighty building project by God’s clear direction (Nehemiah 1-7).
  • The gift of healing delivers healing and restoration to sick bodies and minds. Scripture records Jesus constantly healing all kinds of diseases through the power of the Holy Spirit (Acts 10:38).
  • The gift of teaching unpacks God’s truth and wisdom in ways that enlighten minds and transform hearts. Ezra stands out in teaching Israel about their covenant with God after the exile (Ezra 7:10).

There are too many gifts to describe here fully, but this gives a taste of the diversity and purpose God weaves into each expression of spiritual grace.

Walking faithfully in your spiritual calling lends unique glory to God. And understanding spiritual gifts serves the beauty of diversity among believers united in mission.

Unwrap Your Spiritual Gifts Today!

Unwrapping Your Spiritual Gifts

Unwrapping spiritual gifts starts with an earnest desire for these gifts, confirmation from others, and seeing supernatural abilities operate through your sincere service.

Activate dormant gifts by doing the following:

  • Receive the Holy Spirit
  • Develop intimacy with God by reading Scripture
  • Take small steps of faith and start using the gifts
  • Stay sharp by praying in the Spirit regularly

Serving in your spiritual gifting blesses others in special ways and multiplies fruit for God’s glory. Operating in these graces is the most fulfilling pathway.

Today, why not have an honest conversation with God about spiritual gifts? Ask Him, “What specific abilities do you want me to develop to serve your purposes?” Then open your heart to receive from Him.

By acting on what you know faithfully step-by-step, you’ll uncover more. Don’t bury what God intended for you to use!

Let’s discover and activate our spiritual gifts together – for His glory and the growth of His eternal community!

4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them… 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.”

1 Corinthians 12:4, 7 (NIV)

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s address some common questions about discovering and activating spiritual gifts:

Q. Can I ask God directly to give me certain spiritual gifts?

A. Yes, you can, but God decides which gifts to give you based on your personality, life assignment, and role in ministry (1 Corinthians 12:7-11, 18).

Follow Jesus’ example when he said, “Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine” (Luke 22:42).

Ask God to develop the gifts which please him most to empower your purpose.

Q. How do I know an unusual ability I have is truly a spiritual gift?

A. Uncommon capabilities don’t necessarily indicate spiritual gifts – some are natural talents or learned skills. You know based on their fruit and Scripture.

Ask wise leaders if the outcomes demonstrate godly love. Test it against Scripture’s qualities of service that build up others. Sincere service displays Jesus’ self-giving character and confirms holy spiritual gifts.

Q. Can I use spiritual gifts without being a Christian?

A. No, spiritual gifts come from the Spirit of Christ dwelling within believers (1 Corinthians 12:3).

Natural abilities may imitate spiritual gifts to some degree. But love, righteousness, and power to transform come from an intimate relationship with Jesus by faith, through which we receive the Holy Spirit and his giftings (Acts 19:1-6).

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