It’s not enough to help people know and begin using their spiritual gifts. You need to find ways to help people keep growing and advancing in their gifts and abilities. It’s like a personal walk of discipleship; not a one-and-done but an ongoing and ever-changing journey.
Advanced Spiritual Gifts Workshops
One strategy I have used is creating advanced spiritual gifts workshops. These can be fun and rewarding times away with a great group of people, and are only open to those who have already been through the basic gift-discovery process and are already serving in some way in their area of giftedness. If you have enough people, it’s ideal to make these smaller gatherings of people with the same (or similar) gifts.It’s not enough to help people know and begin using their spiritual gifts. You need to find ways to help people keep growing and advancing in their gifts and abilities. Click To Tweet
For example, I teamed up with a woman who had the gift of discernment and teaching (since I don’t have that particular spiritual gift). We invited people who believed they had the gift of discernment. Our goal was to help them grow in their effective use of their gift of discernment. So we brainstormed key questions that would be helpful and jotted some key insights.
What is discernment?
- The gift of discernment, sometimes called the gift of distinguishing spirits, is the special ability that God gives to certain members of the Body of Christ to discern with assurance whether certain behavior purported to be of God is in reality divine, human or satanic.
Why is discernment important? What need(s) does it meet?
- guards the church from deceitful or demonic influences
- acts as a safeguard to the authenticity of teaching (1 John 4:1-6)
What are some biblical examples of discernment in action?
- Peter discerns the deception of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5:3
- Peter discerns the true condition of Simon’s heart in Acts 8:23
- Paul discerns the spiritual source of a girl’s fortune-telling ability in Acts 16:18
How can we be deceived?
- Gen 3 and Matt 4:1-11 – the lies of Satan, twisting what God has said
- Gal 6:3 – by thinking too highly of yourself
- 1 Cor 15:33 – by hanging around the wrong people
- Gal 6:9 – by believing you won’t reap what you sow
- 1 John 4:1-6 – by accepting false teaching
- 2 Cor 11:13-15 – through false apostles deceitful workers, angel of light, ministers as ministers of righteousness
- and many other ways…
How can you be sure what you are sensing is really from God?
- check what you are discerning against the scriptures
- get confirmation from godly leader(s)
- monitor your accuracy over time
When you have correctly discerned, what do you do about it?
- take it as a prayer assignment from God?
- share with a trusted pastoral leader?
- talk directly to the person involved?
What steps can I take to grow in the gift of discernment?
- Discernment can be developed
- Hebrews 5:14 – through consistent study of God’s Word
- Keep a dated journal of things that you intuit and sense regarding spiritual things
- Search the scriptures to pinpoint how this strays from the truth of God’s Word
- Follow up to note the accuracy of your senses
- Develop relationships with others who have the gift of discernment
- Connect with empowering leader(s) to design a personal ministry development plan
- Take the next faithful steps in pursuing your ministry calling in
- Team with others in ministry
Spiritual gifts in action leads to growth
As we grow in the use our spiritual gift(s) in partnership with others, the Body of Christ grows and builds itself up in love. Think about how you can help others develop their spiritual gifts and fulfill their God-given calling. You can use this example as a template for other spiritual gifts.
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