When I was in Jr. High, the really gifted kids went to SEEK. I’m not sure what it stands for – I guess I never did know – but it was clear that the SEEK kids were at least a notch above the rest of us, since they were allowed to escape Mr. Vega’s social studies class and go to the SEEK room during 5th hour instead.
I’ll admit that I wanted to be in SEEK. I wanted people to think of me as gifted. By default, I felt less important and more average by virtue of NOT being “chosen.” It didn’t keep me up at night, but it did keep me from exploring my own potential giftedness since no one else appeared to think I was anything but a normal kid.
As adults, we find ourselves playing the same mind games as I did with SEEK in Jr. High. More often than we care to admit, we find ourselves comparing our lives, our jobs, our families and our abilities with those of others. And if you’re like me, you tend to come up with the short straw most of the time.
Paul teaches us in Galatians 6:3-5 to:
“Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.”
As followers of Jesus whose lives have been indwelt by the Spirit of God, WE ARE ALL GIFTED!
By virtue of the fact that we have been adopted by the Creator, we have been given gifts with which to reach the world around us with His incredibly lavish forgiveness and love. Chances are that YOUR GIFTS are showing, whether YOU know it or not!
Donna Partow, in her book Making Money from Home, has some very challenging questions that play right into Paul’s advice to the people of Galatia. Donna basically suggests that we make a careful exploration of who (we) are and the work (we’ve) been given so that we CAN sink oursel(ves) into that. If you’re wondering what YOUR pink shoes might be (that is, your unique giftedness – your oddness – for the Kingdom of God), this homework may very well assist you in determining what the creative best for your life might be…
- What do you know about yourself from your school & work experiences?
- If you won awards or preferred extracurricular activities while in school, what does that say about you?
- What motivates you?
- What do you enjoy doing with your free time?
- What section of the bookstore or library do you gravitate toward?
- What websites do you frequently visit?
- If you could only talk about one topic all day, every day, for the rest of your life, what would it be?
- What excites you?
- What energizes you?
- What topic comes up in conversation that you can’t stop talking about?
- What is unusual about you?
- Consider the compliments you receive; what might these be saying about you?
You get the idea.
Spiritually speaking, there are tools out there to help you identify your Spiritual Gifts, and these can be very useful in illuminating potential God-given gifts for ministry. The feedback of others – especially of those who know you well – is an invaluable tool to discovering our giftedness as it affects the world around us. After all, the gifts we are given are not for ourselves, but for the benefit of those whose lives we touch. It stands to reason, then, that OTHERS would be likely to notice our gifts possibly even before we ever do, making comments along the lines of, “Excuse me, Ma’am? Your GIFTS are SHOWING!” something to pay close attention to.
In God’s family, we’re all in SEEK. We all have the opportunity to be pulled out of 5th period in order to explore our giftedness and those things that make us special and unique. So…
DO YOUR HOMEWORK!
DON’T BE TARDY!
The rest of us are waiting for you to come into your own and to put the truth of God on display as only you can!
For more information on Spiritual Gifts, try these websites:
Information on Spiritual Gifts:
Online Spiritual Gifts Assessment (includes a youth version!):
Another Online Assessment: