How generous are you with the gift of yourself? At your funeral, will people honor you because of what you did? Will they talk about how God gifted you? Will they discuss with each other the difference you made?
When you come face to face with Jesus at the time you enter eternal life, will he smile at you because you were generous with the gift of yourself?
You are a gift because God has created you to be gift. You are a gift because you desire to give of your skills and talents.
You are unique; therefore, your ministry is unique. No one besides you can perform this service quite like you. God has matched the perfect ministry to your abilities and spiritual growth.
The question of our calling is not: “What should I do to take God to others?” Rather, the question is: “What should I take of God to others? What has He given me to share?”
When God does something for us, we should not be satisfied with just a “Thank You, Lord” — because God wants more. It’s important to add, “Lord, what do You want me to do with this gift now?”
Whatever we have received from Him is to be given to others. As Catholic lay evangelist David Thorpe has said, “God wants to fill you to spill you.” That is, God wants to fill your life with gifts, in order to spill you onto others.
We should be available to say what Peter said when he healed the crippled man at the temple gate: “What I have I give to you” (see Acts 3:1-10).
As Christians of the 21st century, we are members of a Church that is not just concerned about the souls of others, but the well-being of the whole person, spiritually, physically, socially and psychologically. We are not just concerned about humanity, but the well-being of the planet. Ministry is more than trying to get everyone to heaven; it is working hard to bring all human life to its God-given potential, from the unborn to the elderly, from strangers in the poverty-stricken Third World to the handicapped children in our local schools.
To serve all these needs, the Church is putting out the call for more people, for the use of more gifts, and for the strength of more commitments. As Pope Saint John Paul II said to a group of U.S. bishops in 1993, in today’s world, “the vitality of a parish depends on merging the diverse vocations and gifts of its members into a unity.” We are all needed.
St. Paul summed up the mission of servanthood with these words: “Think of us in these terms: as servants of Christ and stewards of God’s mysteries” (1 Corinthians 4:1). Each of us needs to periodically examine our lives and ask, “How good of a steward am I with the gifts God has given me? Am I doing my part?”
© 2016 by Terry A. Modica
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