Many times when we talk about doing for God, or for His Church, there can be an innate pressure that we feel. Sometimes because others have added that pressure to us, but sometimes because we have our own assumptions and expectations on ourselves of what that should look like. However, when I look at these verses, I am reminded of the generosity and freedom we have in God’s design. It’s only according to God’s grace that He has even given us any gifts, purpose, and opportunity to join Him in the way He works in our world. Not only that, but He has given us different gifts and functions so that we also have the opportunity to work together with each other under Christ.
It’s our own sinful nature that sees our differences through the lens of pride, insecurity, and comparison. In God’s design, these differences are a great gift He has given us! These different gifts not only enable us to work together, but they require us to discover and practice living out our gifts in community as we grow in Christ together.
As we read these verses, we can breathe a sigh of relief and remember that God is the one who created and prepared us to use these gifts, and wants us to live fully into the way He has wired us, not the way He has wired someone else. Our job is to be willing to step out in faith and step up in boldness in order to be able to live out those gifts. Doing it from the “sincere” overflow of the love of God that we have personally received. Only then are we able to serve freely, not making it about us, but looking to bring God glory and make Him known!