who we are

Allison Althoff
Allison Althoff
Natalie Lederhouse
Natalie Lederhouse

Free Newsletters

on TCW

« Book Review: Everyday Justice | Main | Spirituality at Starbucks »

January 20, 2010

Using Your Gifts

Discovering them is one thing; being willing to use them is quite another.

I first heard of spiritual gifts at the church my husband and I joined when our kids were young. We attended an all-day event in which a guest speaker walked us through an assessment to discover what gifts God had built into us for his good purposes.

I was dismayed to learn that my primary spiritual gift was teaching. How could I have the gift of teaching? I was too shy to speak in front of a group. How would I ever be able to teach people if I was always tongue-tied? There must be a mistake, I thought, as I feverishly re-took the assessment. Once again, I scored much higher on teaching than on any other spiritual gift. Okay, God, I bargained, I’ll use this gift, but you’re going to have to grow me. I can’t speak, so I have no idea how you intend for me to use this gift.

About the same time, God led me to my first job as an editor. All my life I wanted to be a writer and an editor. Suddenly I saw the synergy between the dream God planted in me for writing and the prospect of teaching. Perhaps God intended for me to teach through my writing! Suddenly, the gift I wanted to give back to God made sense. Knowing he had “gifted” me to teach gave my writing purpose and significance. I wasn’t writing for just anyone; I was writing for the King!

For 12 years, I wrote articles and edited books, most of which focused on encouraging and equipping women to become all that God intended them to be as individuals, wives, and mothers.

Recently, I retook a spiritual gifts inventory. Can our spiritual gifts change? Does God give us certain gifts for a season and then re-gift us with a new strength for a new season? According to my new score, the spiritual gift of faith is now my strong suit, and teaching ranks far down on the list of possibilities.

As I’ve gotten older and God has allowed me to walk through some difficult life-changing experiences, I feel I have far less to teach others, but a much higher capacity to trust God. Maybe learning to trust God is what he intended for me to teach others all along.

Related Tags: Spiritual gifts


Great post. I definitely agree that the Lord gives us specific things for specific purposes. I am still yet to discover mine:)

I'll have to agree, the Lord gives strengths in seasons. I feel there's a season for everything. I too am trying to zero in on my gift or gifts. I'm at a season where my faith is working more, and I'm praying more than I ever have.

I love your post.We are in the process of inventorying our spitual(motivational) gifts analysis at my church.We took the same analysis 5 years ago and my most dominant gifts were server,giver,exhorter,and then teacher.This time around my top gifts are teacher,giver,and perceiver.I never would have seen myself as a perceiver.My husbands' gifts are server,giver,and compassionate person(person of mercy).Before taking this test I didn't see him as a person of mercy and I didn't see myself as a perceiver.I would think things would have been the other way around.I am really enjoying our Pastors' teaching on the manifestation,ministry,and motivational gifts.My gift of teaching is right in line with my profession,I have been teaching for almost 15 years.My husbands' gift of server is being utilized in GODs' house.He is a deacon-in-training.

Amwn I was just healed from Cancer and had to trust god for my healing. Actually trust and faith go together. I has to have faith and trust that God would heal my body and he did.

I shared your findings and found excited about the result after the anaysis test. Teacher. The post I quitted many many years again because I hated to speak up. Yes I found that God gives me passion in writing. I can communicate by words, by writing, by editing and copywriting inspiring stories for mutual encouragement. I pray for God to extend my boundary beyond: new talents I can aspire for.

Where can you find a spiritual gift analysis?

In young believers, these gifts are not always evidenced or developed because of where they are in their life experience. If given a spiritual gifts test, for many the results will be inconclusive.

This is a very inspiring post. Thanks for sharing your passion for using your gifts.

Post a comment:

Verification (needed to reduce spam):


see more

books we're reading