Coveting the Best Gifts

I’m thankful for my place in the church and the body of Christ. When we look to the nation for unity, we don’t see much of it. We look to the world and we see various organizations. The church of God is an organism; it’s alive and Jesus is the head. You and I are members of the body of Christ. We are each gifted by the head, the brain, and put in our place.  Consider your place. Consider the gift God has given you. Ask yourself “how well am I using the gift God gave me?”

Not everyone can sit down and play the piano. I’m not gifted for that but we’re all blessed with skills and gifts. The Holy Spirit is in our heart and evidence of this is the fruit of the Spirit:  love, joy, peace, etc. Consider Jesus the brain (he is the head). The Holy Spirit is the nerves that go to every part of the body. In our bodies, if a person gets nerve damage things don’t work right. They could get neuropathy or other aches. The Holy Spirit energizes the members, teaching us to do what we should.

I Corinthians 12:24 For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked. 25 That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. 26 And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. 27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. 28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles? 30 Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret? 31 But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.

Covet can be used in a negative sense. One of the Ten Commandments says we are not to covet what belongs to someone else. In a positive sense, we are to covet what brings honor to God. It means to have a continual desire to have and use something for Him. I remember when I’d dream about driving. I got my learners and couldn’t wait to drive and get a car. It was a desire that drove me. If we lose our desire as a Christian everything becomes hollow.  Instead of blaming others, remember we’re responsible for driving ourselves. We can’t be nudged and talked into serving the Lord. We should want to do it. Take the initiative.

The best gifts are not high profile ones but the little ones. They matter. How I live and what I do for others counts. We are to covet the best gifts, the ones that edify others instead of glorying ourselves. We serve God by serving one another. We all want to feel useful, like we’re accomplishing something. Just because we don’t achieve what others do does not mean that what we do doesn’t matter. We’re energized by the Holy Spirit and members of the body. Some parts are more comely, but may not be as needed. Hair is comely. A mustache may be comely.  But we need muscle mass; it’s better than fat. Don’t be a flabby Christian. Be a strong, solid one. Use what God has given you for his glory.

Jesus is not part of our body; we are in him. He is the brain, the head. We’re not all the same.  Verses 29-30 ask are all apostles or prophets or teachers? No one is a “have all.” No one is a “do all.”  No one is an “is all.” Some people think they are the best Christian ever. That’s being a Pharisee. Do what God wants. No one has it all. We can’t function as a body if we all try to do and be the same thing.  Everyone is equally important and valuable in the body of Christ. Everything in our body is important, even what we can’t see. When one part doesn’t work right, we see how important it is. I can’t shake hands with someone else if I don’t do it with my hands. I wouldn’t use my foot. Be a hand. Quit trying to be something else when we’re not doing what God wants. Seek the best gifts and don’t get in the way of someone trying to use his or her gift. Use our gifts with love.  If we do, we’ll be a whole body for the Lord. So, how well are you using your gifts?

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