Photo by Nika Akin via Pixabay

Imagine yourself sitting at a table participating in a dinner party. Everyone is having side conversations while eating. You hear this gentle roar with the clinking of silverware on the plates. Waiters are moving about refilling drinks and ensuring everyone has what they need to enjoy their meal.

Suddenly, you hear a commotion and see people pushing back from a table and others jumping up. Still, a few gathered fine cloth napkins, and two kneeled on the floor. You’re not sure what happened.

We all have gifts. They differ according to the grace God has given to each of us. Do you have the gift of prophecy? Then use it according to the faith you have. If your gift is serving, then serve. If it is teaching, then teach. Is it encouraging others? Then encourage them. Is it giving to others? Then give freely. Is it being a leader? Then work hard at it. Is it showing mercy? Then do it cheerfully. Rom. 12:6-8 (NIV)

You now figured out what had happened. One of the dinner participants spilled their water. Almost immediately, you witness individuals reacting according to how they are gifted.

Those who serve gathered the napkins, and other servers got on the floor to soak up the water. A giver took an unused glass of water and cheerfully gave it to the now-embarrassed diner. Another diner, with the gift of prophecy, turned and said to the person next to them, “I knew that was going to happen.” Then, one with the gift of teaching turned to the one who spilled their water and gently suggested that they put their drinking glass behind their plate when they finished drinking a drink. Placing it near the table’s edge was an accident waiting to happen.

After people turned away from the incident, one encourager quietly moved in and encouraged the red-faced guest to forget about it and return to eating and having a good time. The head waiter came over to ensure the mess was cleaned up and then leaned in, showing mercy, and said, “Don’t worry about it. We all have done it at one time or another.” After the dinner, the main speaker went to the podium and, before giving her speech, said, “Let us all move our waters toward the middle of the tables as I move mine away from my speech.” Some laughed. She was a natural leader.

If you were at that dinner party, what would you have done? When you read this story, what was your natural reaction? Your first thought? Your answer to that question is a natural indicator of how you are wired. Or to your natural gifting.

That gift is from God. So I ask, “Are you using your gift?” More importantly, “Are you using it for the One who gave it to you?” I hope so, and I highly encourage you to. It would be a shame not to use a gift because gifts are made to be given away.

Copyright © 2023 Mark Brady.